Read River of Time by Jon Swain Free Online
Book Title: River of Time|
The author of the book: Jon Swain
Date of issue: October 1st 1999
ISBN 13: 9780425168059
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 24.94 MB
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 2234 times
Reader ratings: 6.1
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This book grew on me. At first I was disgusted with the author's exotification of Southeast Asia -- his love of foreign women, French colonial culture, opium. Add to that his addiction to war and social unrest as an excuse to throw off the tedium of life in Western society. That he enjoyed the decadence of prostitutes, drugs and "free living" while the societies around him decayed slowly seemed reprehensible.
However, I just couldn't help being moved by his account of the fall of Vietnam and Phnom Penh. The latter, in particular, is heart-wrenching. The author's account of the fall of PP to the Khmer Rouge is a brilliant piece of journalism and an essential historical account of a critical point in Cambodian history. Swain may have flown back into PP for the thrill of the chase, but not even I could deny the humanity in his account of this dreadful, unspeakable event.
I read this book while traveling in Cambodia which increased its poignancy for me but it will appeal to anyone interested in learning more about a critical part of recent world history. For those traveling in SE Asia this book is a MUST to understand what Cambodian and Vietnamese people have endured over the past 50 years. And while Swain may be nostalgic for a French-ruled Indochina, readers will understand that what these people really needed and continue to need is foreign aid and support, not cultural imperialism.
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Read information about the authorJon Swain was born in London and spent his early years in West Bengal and at school in England. He began his career in journalism as a teenager, working in the English provinces. After a brief stint in the French Foreign Legion, his desire to be a foreign correspondent drove him first to Paris and then, in early 1970, to Indo-China to cover the Vietnam war. He stayed until 1975, working first for Agence France-Presse, the French news agency, and then as a freelance reporter and photographer, principally for The Sunday Times, BBC, Economist and Daily Mail before he joined the staff of The Sunday Times.
Jon was the only British journalist in Phnom Penh when it fell to the Khmer Rouge in April 1975. His coverage of these events and their horrific aftermath won him the first of his many awards, the British Press Awards Journalist of the Year. They featured in the Oscar-winning film, The Killing Fields, and form the backdrop to Jon’s bestselling memoir River of Time.
Jon was on the staff of The Sunday Times for 35 years. His career has taken him to most of the world’s wars and disasters. His reporting reflects wide experience in Asia, Africa - where he was kidnapped for three months - and the Middle East.
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