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Shutterbabe: Adventures in Love and Warby Deborah Copaken Kogan
Synopses & Reviews
What if the protagonist in that age-old tale-boy goes to war, comes back a man--were a female? Shutterbabe, Deborah Copaken Kogan's remarkable debut, is just that: the story of atwenty-two-year-old girl from Potomac, Maryland, who goes off to photograph wars and comes back, four years and one too many adventures later, a woman.
In 1988, fresh out of Harvard, Kogan moved to Pariswith a small backpack, a couple of cameras, the hubris of a superhero, and a strong thirst for danger. She wanted to see what a war would look like when seen from up close, to immerse herself in a world where the gun isGod. Naively, she figured it would be easy to filter death through the prism of her wide-angle lens.
She was deadwrong.
Within weeks of arriving in Paris, after knocking on countless photo agency doors and begging to be sent where the action was, Kogan found herself on the back of a truck in Afghanistan, her tinyframe veiled from head to toe, the only woman - and the only journalis — in a convoy of rebel freedom fighters. Kogan had not actually planned on shooting the Afghan war alone. However, the beguilingFrench photographer she'd entrusted with both her itinerary and her heart turned out to be as dangerously unpredictable as, well, a war.
It is the saga of both her relationship with this French-man andher assignment in Afghanistan that fuels the first of Shutterbabe's six page-turning chapters, each covering a different corner of the globe and each ultimately linked to the man Kogan was involved with at the time. FromZim-babwe to Romania, from Russia to Haiti, Kogan takes her readers on a heartbreaking yet surprisingly hilarious journey through a mine-strewn decade, her personal battles against sexism, battery, and even rape blendingseamlessly with the historical struggles of war, revolution, and unfathomable abuse it was her job to record.
In the end, what was once adventurous to the girl began to weigh heavily on the woman. Thoughher photographs were often splashed across the front pages of international newspapers and magazines, though she was finally accepted into photojournalism's macho fraternity, with each new assignment, with each new affair, Kogan began to feel there was something more she was after. Ultimately, what she discovered in herself was a person — a woman - for whom life, not death, is the one true adventure to be cherished above all.
The author describes her career as a young photojournalist, beginning with her first assignment--fresh out of college--traveling to a wartorn Afghanistan with dangerously unpredictable Frenchman and around the world to battlefields in Zimbabwe, Russia, and Haiti, as she also details her relationships with the men in her life. 35,000 first printing.
At age twenty-two, fresh out of college and passionate about photography, Deborah Copaken Kogan moved to Paris and began knocking on photo agency doors, begging to be given a photojournalism assignment. Within weeks, she was on the back of truck in Afghanistan with a huge bag of cameras and film strapped to her tiny frame, the only woman — and unfortunately, the only journalist — in a convoy of rebel freedom fighters. She had traveled to Afghanistan with a handsome but dangerously unpredictable Frenchman, and the saga of both their relationship and the assignment is the first of Shutterbabe's six page-turning chapters, each covering a different corner of the globe and each intimately linked to the man Kogan was involved with at the time. From Zimbabwe to Romania, from to Russia to Haiti, Kogan takes her readers on a heartbreaking yet surprisingly hilarious journey through a mine-strewn decade, her personal battles — sexism, battery, life-threatening danger — blending seamlessly with the historical ones — wars, revolutions, unfathomable suffering — that it was her job to record. Shutterbabe is a thrilling coming-of-age story, told with humor and uncommon wisdom, about how one woman fought her way onto battlefields, and the horrors, truths, and love that she discovered there.
About the Author
Deborah Copaken Kogan worked as a photojournalist from 1988 to 1992, and her photographs appeared in Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, L'Express, Liberation, and G
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