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Stringer: A Reporter's Journey in the Congo Hardcover – January 7, 2014
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Title: Stringer( A Reporter's Journey in the Congo) <>Binding: Hardcover <>Author: AnjanSundaram <>Publisher: DoubledayBooks
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Sundarum chose a living arrangement with a family in one of Kinshasa's slums (he had no money for a good hotel room, nor did he want one), slowly developed his contacts, and became a stringer for the Associated Press, traveling to places in the lawless gold and diamond-rich country where important journalists never ventured.
What he produced in "Stringer" is far more than a tale of a young man's adventure. It is an illuminating account of how, and why, one African country blessed with great natural riches has continually failed to lift its people out of poverty. The causes are complex. Occasionally I found Sundarum's reasoning a bit too pat. But he succeeds brilliantly in explaining the Congo like no other writer I've read.
Stringer starts with Anjan chasing a boy through the streets who has stolen his phone. He is unable to recover it and things go from bad to worse. The memoir becomes The Perils Of Anjan in the Congo. I wanted to encourage him to go home and assure him that his parents would welcome him and a life in a financial institution couldn't be all bad. He did however stick it out and he did begin to find success as a journalist even though he continued to find himself in dangerous situations he didn't back away.
I did find his description of life, politics and world dynamics interesting and enlightening:
"We currently live in what some say is the Fourth Great Pillage--others call it the Fifth or Sixth. The world now needs cell phones, and Congo contains 60 percent of known reserves of an essential metal called tantalum. It is the curse: each progress in the world produces some new suffering."
I encouraged anyone interested in the Congo to read this and if you are interested in learning more about this book and author has a site in which you can access other articles written by him and videos in which he appears.