review THE TRANSLATOR

The writer of this book is Daoud Hari. He hails from the Darfur-region in Sudan. He is a member of the Zaghawe-tribe/clan. He recounts the story of his life in the midst of the cruelties of the war in Sudan, especially in de Darfur-region.

From a young age he knows the troubles at first hand. He goes to primary school and later on to the secondary school in a bigger town. Here he catches a love for the English language. After finishing his education he moves to Lybia to get work in a restaurant. Later on he moves to Egypt and when he tries to get into Israel he gets caught and lands in prison. He is moved to a prison in Egypt. Later on (summer 2003) he is flown to the capital city of Chad. He heads for Darfur and he sees the enormities of the problems. Many relatives have been murdered by governmenttrooops and the Janjaweed. Also his brother Achmed is killed.

Many people from his village decide to leave. Daoud’s family is split into two groups. In the end Daoud finds himself in Chad again. Here he takes Chadian nationality. Membeers of his tribe live in Sudan and in Chad. That makes it easier to get the Chadian nationality.

Here in Chad his life as a translater starts. He joins a team of translators and reseachers that goes to refugeecamps to establish wether or not genocide has been committed by the Sudanese government. When he has obtained a cellphone his independent life as a translator can start. He works for different journalists who want to report on the situation in Darfur.
A main part of his book is taken up by a journey with an American reporter of the National Geographic and a reluctant driver. They get caught by rebels and handed from one group to another. They are tortured. Their lives are in imminent danger.

The book has a short history of Sudan and the Universal Declaration on Human Rights.
The writer now lives in the United States.

Daoud Hari – The Tranlator – Random House 2008

the translator

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semper

I enjoy reading about Africa. New books. Old books. By African writers. By non-African writers. Novel. History. Travel. Biographies. Autobiographies. Politics. Colonialism. Poetry.

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