Haiti After the Earthquake

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dr. Paul Farmer discusses the massive earthquake that destroyed much of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, in January 2010, killing hundreds of thousands of people. In Haiti After the Earthquake, Farmer describes the suffering and resilience he encountered while treating the injured in Haiti. He explores the social problems that made Haiti so vulnerable to the earthquake—the issues he says make it an "unnatural disaster."


Paul Farmer

Comments [4]

How can Farmer claim that NGOs were not helping immensely? Or that they were not integrating with the Haitian government? As director for my NGO ( I attended many meetings at the UN "logbase" and in all of them there was integration with national government.
No, the problem is corruption, at the high and mid levels. Unless these rich Haitians stop their selfish and cruel acts, the country will continue to suffer. The poor must revolt to stop these abuses and insanities.

Jul. 15 2011 12:01 AM
Peter Talbot from Harrison NJ


Thank you for having Dr. Farmer on to keep Haiti in the mind's eye. His empathy for the struggles of the real Haitians (as opposed to the over-class of mulatto Haitians that too often trip over their class and racial hatreds) is soft spoken and wise.

I wish I could agree that there is reason to be hopeful for progress on any of his theses (i.e.: public sector competence; infrastructure repair; housing recreation; agricultural improvement; better coordination of NGO assistance; support from the Haitian diaspora; improved UN and USA assistance design and delivery), but these have all been chimerical in the past for reasons too complex to write here.

Blessings to the gens d'Ayiti: they could use many of these.

Jul. 14 2011 12:58 PM

After seeing photos of the human destruction in Haiti, how does anyone still believe there is an omnipotent and caring God.

Jul. 14 2011 12:21 PM
Patrick from Brooklyn

I've heard you say that the key to Haiti's revival will be investing in Haitian institutions. If we focused on educating Haitians in agrarian and economic fields, could we not see a rapid turn around in 12 years or so?

Jul. 14 2011 12:21 PM

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