Howard W. French is an associate professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and was for many years a New York Times correspondent. His most recent book is A Continent for the Taking: The Tragedy and Hope of Africa. (December 2010)
Than Shwe: Unmasking Burma’s Tyrant by Benedict Rogers, with a foreword by Václav Havel
Everything Is Broken: A Tale of Catastrophe in Burma by Emma Larkin
The Corpse Walker: Real-Life Stories, China from the Bottom Up by Liao Yiwu, translated from the Chinese with an introduction by Wen Huang, and with a foreword by Philip Gourevitch
The Dynamics of Violence in Central Africa by René Lemarchand
The Congo Wars: Conflict, Myth and Reality by Thomas Turner
Officially, I had come to Burma—ruled by one of the world’s most opaque and repressive regimes—to teach a one-month documentary photography course to local photojournalists. But it was the only country in Southeast Asia I had never managed to visit and I was very eager to explore the place for myself.