Hurston/Wright Foundation | Lynne Duke
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Lynne Duke

Lynne Duke Obit


Mandela, Mobutu,and Me

Lynne Duke


“For 20 years, I wrote local, national, international and magazine articles for The Washington Post. But of all my beats, it is the Africa beat, the Africa stories, that are closest to my heart and that grip me to this day. My book, “Mandela, Mobutu and Me,” is based on my travels and dispatches in Africa during the four years from 1995 to 1999 that I spent as The Washington Post’s Johannesburg bureau chief. My territory spanned southern and central Africa, so I traveled and wrote of events in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Mozambique, Angola, Congo-Zaire, Rwanda, Uganda, and elsewhere. I covered South Africa’s first democratic government, under President Nelson Mandela. Further north, I chronicled the decline and fall of Zaire under President Mobutu Sese Seko. Post-genocide Rwanda also occupied much of my time, as did the final years of the long Angolan civil war and the slow unraveling of Zimbabwe under President Robert Mugabe. In between the big stories of Africa, I managed to write also of ordinary life and ordinary people – the fishermen of Mozambique, the villagers of Namibia, the women of Zambia who tired of walking to the river for water and so started their own water works, just to name a few.”

-Lynne Duke

Biographies and Memoirs,