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A Thousand Farewells: A Reporter's Journey From Refugee Camp To The Arab Spring Hardcover – Apr 10 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Viking; 1st Edition edition (April 10 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670069094
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670069095
  • Product Dimensions: 16.4 x 2.9 x 23.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 567 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #102,819 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

“Ayed’s voice is fresh in Middle East coverage. She is plain-spoken, intellectually honest.” - National Post

“Powerful … [A Thousand Farewells is] part memoir, part history lesson on the Arab world—and quietly, but oh so passionately, a defence of good old-fashioned journalism in a time of cost cuts and Google News…. Ayed brings insight to big societal issues …. But she is at her most persuasive recounting the stories of ordinary Arabs she meets along the way.” - The Gazette (Montreal)

In the Canadian media landscape, it’s a rare journalist who views reporting as a selfless calling that subjugates ego in favour of a well-reported story. That’s why Nahlah Ayed’s new memoir is a refreshing take on the life of an overseas correspondent in some of the world’s most volatile hot spots…. Ayed’s all-consuming work ethic is apparent in the care and attention to detail throughout this book…. By no means a comprehensive overview of the region, A Thousand Farewells is nonetheless a valuable street-level view that doesn’t boast of big names interviewed or famous company kept. Rather, this genuinely interesting individual dedicated to no-nonsense coverage of a difficult part of the world offers readers a good narrative that recalls an age when the substance of journalists’ work took precedence over their well-coiffed personas.” - Quill & Quire (starred review)

“[A Thousand Farewells is] brisk but carefully measured…. A compelling collection of stories and subjects, memories and snippets of well-chosen journalistic detail.” - Winnipeg Free Press

About the Author

Nahlah Ayed was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba , is of Palestinian descent, and is fluent in both Arabic and English. She joined the CBC in 2002 and is currently a CBC correspondent, stationed in Libya .


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By timothy rapsey on April 30 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If ever you might consider an individual both called by destiny and responding in Freedom to that call..Nahlah Ayed would be such a one. Her ability to both be a witness and a participant in the events in her life and the life of the Middle East is both objective and passionate. She has the gift of piercing through the veils of a situation and revealing the human heart of the matter..with tremendous clarity..thus able in a way to see things as they are with empathy..judging yet non-judgemental. Her writing has both the conciseness of the seasoned reporter under time restrictions having to cut to the chase without trivialising an event or a life. Yet her writing is not dry but leads you in deeply to the story..and as she says "the people are the story". I thank her for the writing of this book. Her insights and experiences are a gift to anyone trying to make understand more both the refugee, the weight of history, and the longing for emancipation.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Alongtimecook on May 28 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nahlah Ayed is a Canadian, of Palestinian ethnicity. She begins the book with her early, comfortable life in Canada and then details her traumatizing move to a refugee camp in Jordan when she was a child. Her family lived in Jordan for seven long unhappy years before they returned to the security and safety of Canada. Nahlah became a TV journalist. With her fluency in Arabic, it was natural for her to cover the Middle East. She recalls various conflicts she saw, in which she was sometimes an accidental participant, with the cool eye of the professional. With her unusual background and understanding, she writes not just of the problems and overall disfunction of the region, be it Beirut or Baghdad, but captures the age old sadness. The dictators and autocratic monarchs have kept the people enslaved and finally, in the age of social media, they are beginning to rebel. A great read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By thomas pawlick on Sept. 1 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A well-written, honest description of the key issues in the Middle East, and of the difficulties journalists face in covering the region. Ayed is a fine reporter, and as her book shows, a conscientious, decent human being. I've reported from the region myself, and her work is bang-on. Shukraan, Nahlah.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rick Brady on Feb. 6 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After seeing Nahlah on the CBC evening news so many times over the years reporting on stories in the middle east , hearing she
had written a book about her life i knew i would have to read it . I come from a " wasp " background ( white anglo saxon / protestant ) and Nahlah --Arab / Palestinian , you couldn't get 2 more different people if you tried . Yet i could easily relate to some of her feelings in her book which i found to be open , raw & honest and caused in me deep emotional reactions and new understanding
of just how difficult life in some countries really is , and just how truly fortunate i am to be where i am .
Thank you Nahlah * a thousand times * for sharing your life with us ( the world ) , i'm sure this couldn't have been easy to write for you .
Yes i would recommend this to friend-s- and already have .
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J R DURRANT on March 7 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Her honsety about her early life- about being taken back to Jordan having already settled in Canada makes this a moving story. I do have some issues with her "jumping" around and wondering what happened just prior to the events being described.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Roger Barsy on Feb. 18 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
In this book Nahlah's dedication to hearing the ordinary people's stories made a real connection with me.
The narratives created empathy. Her unique background enabled the reader to look into the window of the lives of those that lived and died in this mysterious region. The Arab proverbs and the language provided a real sense of both context and insight into the Arab world.
Nahlah's account was as unbiased as it can ever be. We are all somewhat biased however
She gave the accounts of those that were there. I sensed no politics, just narratives and her observations.

Nahlah showed complete respect for people throughout her extended assignment. I also felt her fear and excitement as she traversed the region. I came away with respect for her bravery and her character.

I take away how both different and similar we in the West are with those in the Middle East. It seems the moral foundations, as developed by J. Haidt, of Loyalty, Santification, and Authority are just as important to those in the Middle East as Care ,Fairness, and Liberty is to Western Democracy. It is not that Care and Fairness don't count. It seems that they count more in groups, tribes and sects. As Nahlah pointed out time and again, the Habits and Traditions govern how to behave in Arab society. It seems to me, after reading Nahlah's concluding remarks that
Our Lens keeps us from seeing things from their moral values. Just maybe their democracy will evolve to account for group needs, just as we have enshrined individual needs in our constitutions. And maybe the "Groups" will ensure Care and Fairness. So far that is a big Maybe!

I share the Author's concern over the Arab Winter because the results of the Arab Spring are still being played out.
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