In January, one of the members of my four-woman book club wanted to read something about Haiti since we all had to embarrassingly admit ignorance about this earthquake-ravaged country. She suggested “Mountains Beyond Mountains,” by Pulitzer Prize-winner Tracy Kidder and now I’m suggesting it to y’all. Read this book and you’ll be like us: Beginning to understand the Haiti story that’s behind the headlines. “Mountains” is a non-fiction look at Paul Farmer, a brilliant, charmistic and compassionate Harvard-trained doctor and anthropologist who’s moved by the plight of Haiti’s poor. Farmer helped establish a community-based health project in 1983 in Cange, in Haiti’s Central Plateau near Port-au-Prince where an internationally financed dam had obliterated the peasants’ land and way-of-life — reducing them to less-than-subsistence. Farmer’s initiative, Partners in Health, has grown into a world-wide non-profit organization and Farmer is a recognized global authority on poverty-related health issues. Kidder’s book traces the development of PIH but focuses on Haiti. You’ll learn about the daily lives of its peasants and the almost unbelievable obstacles they face just to provide human basics for themselves. You’ll find out about Haiti’s history and culture and way of life — and you’ll come to respect and appreciate and be amazed at how the Haiti people survive. Learn more about PIH and its work in Haiti at http://www.pih.org and author Tracy Kidder at http://www.tracykidder.com/. Farmer’s Wikipedia entry has lots of good information, too, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Farmer.
Published by shoalswriter
I'm a freelance writer, editor and marketing consultant focusing on style, history, food and the arts in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. I'm also an adjunct journalism instructor and writing coach. My husband is a newspaper sports editor, and he and I are from middle Tennessee. Older Daughter and her husband, an artist and high-school art teacher, live nearby with our three young grandsons. Younger Daughter works in PR and event planning and also lives nearby. View all posts by shoalswriter