Release Date: May 2011
Bilingual photography/testimony project: 1985-2010
Photographer Paul Dix worked in Nicaragua with Witness for Peace from 1985 to 1990 documenting the impacts of US foreign policy on the citizens of Nicaragua. In 2002 he and Pam Fitzpatrick began returning to Nicaragua, searching for a particular 100 of those photographed by Paul. This book focuses on 30 of those individuals. It includes photographs of each from both the 1980s and the present, as well as personal background information and compelling testimonies. Memories of five of these people are also depicted in color drawings crafted for Paul in the 1980s. The book includes a background essay on the Contra War as well as a more in depth overview of the long history of US involvement in the affairs of Nicaragua. Prologues are by Gioconda Belli and Richard Boren, and the history of US involvement is by Mark Lester. Profits from the sale of these books will be directed to community organized projects in Nicaragua.
"Here we have the tracks left by the 'Freedom Fighters.'
President Reagan sent them to Nicaragua to save Nicaragua from the danger of becoming Nicaragua:
so Nicaragua would not be Nicaragua; so it would continue being just a fourth-class colony.
The greatest power in the world against a very small, impoverished country:
ten years of ruthless war not only left thousands dead and mutilated, it also left poisoned souls
and murdered hopes.
In a magical way, this book shows the visible as well as the invisible wounds. And the
persistent, inexplicable joy of living: in spite of everything."
—Eduardo Galeano, writer
"Nicaragua: Surviving the Legacy of U.S. Policy is an extraordinarily powerful and moving book. A single genre cannot begin to convey what the people of Nicaragua or any dependant nation live with day to day: the consequences of criminal U.S. foreign policy. Only a multi-genre offering—in which the photographic image, human testimony, children's drawings and more combine to open a door on that life—can come close to reflecting its reality. Pam Fitzpatrick and Paul Dix give us such a door. It is up to us to look, listen and walk through."
—Margaret Randall author of Sandino's Daughters and Sandino's Daughters Revisited, among other books
"About 2500 years ago Aeschylus, the Greek playwright, wrote, 'He who learns must suffer. And even in our sleep, pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.' These remarkable photos and the stories that accompany them should be on billboards from sea to shining sea, so the pain and suffering they represent might fall drop by drop upon the American psyche and against our will, by the awful grace of God, wisdom might come to these United States and her foreign policy."
—Charlie Clements, Executive Director, Carr Center for Human Rights at Harvard University, author of Witness to War