Cover image for Madness visible : a memoir of war
Title:
Madness visible : a memoir of war
Author:
Di Giovanni, Janine, 1961-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Knopf, [2003]

©2003
Physical Description:
xiii, 285 pages : map ; 25 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780375410734
Format :
Book

Available:*

Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library DR2087.7 .D5 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Hamburg Library DR2087.7 .D5 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Summary

Summary

"As a reporter for The Times of London, Janine di Giovanni found herself a close witness to the cycles of violence and vengeance in cities and villages, in refugee camps, in slapped-together hospitals, and in the homes of citizens under siege. She begins her story in May 1999 in Kosovo. The world believes the Balkan wars are over, but violence persists. She follows the arc of the war from its earliest days through the staggering experience of the people who endured it: soldiers numbed by - and inured to - the atrocities they commit, women driven to despair by their life in paramilitary rape camps, civilians (di Giovanni among them) caught in bombing raids of uncertain origin, babies murdered in hate-induced rage." "She searches for the motives of the leaders who created this hell: Slobodan Milosevic and his wife, Mira Markovic, and such crucial though less well-known figures as Nikola Koljevic, who directed the siege - and accomplished the destruction - of Sarajevo, the city he claimed to love." "Di Giovanni's story raises profoundly challenging questions: What can cause neighbors who have lived peacefully side by side for centuries to turn against one another with mindless brutality? What becomes of survivors when the fabric of an age-old community is destroyed? How should other governments react to mass murder in a neighboring country?"--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Anglo-American journalist di Giovanni assembles and extends her war reportage from the Balkans into an impressive overview of the disintegration of Yugoslavia. She reports the dreary and appalling events since the death of Tito and, especially, since 1992 in better prose than a good deal of the competition commands, though not even her accounts of individual survival and suffering break much new ground. She points the finger of blame squarely at the Serbs, however, for taking actions without which there would have been no crisis and whose dream of a greater Serbia is definitely as bloodthirsty as that of a Judenfrei Europe. She is also blunt about foreign intervention having been too little and too late, leaving NATO and the UN with blood on their hands and the real prospect of Balkan ethnic brawls erupting again for the World War I centennial. In all, a worthwhile discussion of whether the influence of the violence-never-settles-anything mentality now causes more violence than it prevents. --Roland Green Copyright 2003 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

"It is only possible to love one war," writes di Giovanni in this devastating memoir of the Balkans, quoting another intrepid war journalist, Martha Gellhorn. For Gellhorn, it was the Spanish Civil War; for di Giovanni, it's the series of conflicts that, since 1991, have consumed the republics of the former Yugoslavia. Expanded from a Vanity Fair article, this book presents a harrowing firsthand account of a region's spiral into madness. Di Giovanni, a senior foreign correspondent for The Times (London), was there almost from the beginning: she shuddered through the first icy winter of the Sarajevo siege (the longest in modern history); she sipped tea with Arkan, the dreaded leader of the ethnic-cleansing paramilitary Tigers; she stood shoulder to shoulder with Serb revolutionaries on "Day One" of the overthrow of Slobodan Milosevic. The book deals primarily with di Giovanni's experiences covering the most recent war-1999's conflict in Kosovo-but it moves through time from the initial dissolution of Yugoslavia to the most recent, guardedly optimistic attempts at reconstruction. Di Giovanni provides ample historical context to the fighting (readers seeking to understand the separatist impulse of the Montenegrin Orthodox Church or Milosevic's "mother complex" have plenty of evidence to play with), but eventually, the names and dates of massacres and treaties pale next to the spectacle of pure horror: a dog trotting by with a human hand in its mouth; a crazed woman lying naked in full view of snipers, begging to be shot. Di Giovanni has written a tragic book that vividly memorializes the millions who suffered in the name of religion, nationality and ego. Map not seen by PW. Agent, Kim Witherspoon. (Nov. 17) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

A senior foreign correspondent for the London Times asks penetrating questions about the war she witnessed in the Balkans. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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