Synopses & Reviews
In 2004, Darfur, Sudan was described as the "world's greatest humanitarian crisis." Twenty years previously, Darfur was also the site of a disastrous famine. Famine that Kills
is a seminal account of that famine, and a social history of the region. In a new preface prepared for this revised edition, Alex de Waal analyzes the roots of the current conflict in land disputes, social disruption and impoverishment. Despite vast changes in the nature of famines and in the capacity of response, de Waal's original challenge to humanitarian theory and practice including a focus on the survival strategies of rural people has never been more relevant. Documenting the resilience of the people who suffered, it explains why many fewer died than had been predicted by outsiders. It is also a pathbreaking study of the causes of famine deaths, showing how outbreaks of infectious disease killed more people than starvation. Now a classic in the field, Famine that Kills
provides critical background and lessons of past intervention for a region that finds itself in another moment of humanitarian tragedy.
"...an interesting new preface in which he comments on events in the region since the early 1980s...a useful case study of the dynamics of famine."--Foreign Affairs
Praise for the Previous Edition:
"[A] classic study."--Andrew Natsios, Administrator, USAID
"A book of decisive practical and intellectual significance."--Craig Calhoun, President, Social Sciences Research Council
"This book and Sen's Poverty and Famines are the two most important books ever written on famine."--Sue Lautze, Director, Livelihoods Initiatives Program, Feinstein International Famine Center, Tufts University
"A key text in understanding famine and never more relevant than today. It put people's coping strategies on the map, as well as the importance of disease-led mortality."--Dr David Keen, Reader in Complex Emergencies, London School of Economics
"The best book ever written about the region."--John Prendergast, International Crisis Group
About the Author
Alex de Waal
is a Director of Justice Africa in London and a fellow of the Global Equity Initiative at Harvard University. He is the author of several books on famine, human rights, and conflict in Africa, and has been at the forefront of mobilizing African and international responses to these problems.