Killing Haiti With Kindness


It’s called Killing With Kindness: Haiti, International Aid and NGOs (Rutgers University Press), but anthropologist Mark Schuller’s ethnographic study of foreign aid in Haiti before and after a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck in 2010 depicts something closer to killing with disregard. Schuller’s book is primarily set between 2003 and 2005, around the time when a coup […]

Why Context Matters: Journalists and Haiti

Haiti plate

Earlier this week, the Ms. Blog interviewed journalist Mac McClelland regarding the much-discussed online article she wrote about dealing with PTSD after a reporting stint in Haiti. One of our Ms. bloggers wanted to weigh in with her thoughts about the controversial story. As a Haitian American feminist anthropologist who has written much on both gender-based […]

Haitian Feminist Yolette Jeanty Honored With Other Global Women’s Activists


Haitian feminist Yolette’s Jeanty‘s name may not ring a bell, but her tireless work has been rightfully recognized recently. As executive director of Kay Fanm (in Kreyol, House of Women)–an organization whose mission is to fight for social justice and women’s rights–Jeanty has been an advocate and supporter of women and girls for decades. This […]

The Legacy of Haitian Feminist Paulette Poujol-Oriol

Paulette Poujol Oriol

Paulette Poujol-Oriol, who died March 11 at age 84, left her birth country, Haiti, a legacy that is immeasurable. She was one of Haiti’s most ardent feminist leaders, as well as an unmatched cultural producer and worker. She was born in Port-au-Prince on May 12, 1926 to Joseph Poujol, founder of the Commercial Institute, and Augusta […]

Why I Am Marching for “Ayiti Cherie” (Beloved Haiti)


At 4:53:10pm on January 12, 2010, I was at home in Middletown, CT, when the ground below Haiti ruptured. I felt like I had been hit with a forklift; I was in a blur for days. There are many ways I could commemorate the one-year marker of the devastating earthquake that paralyzed my birth country–memorial […]

Haiti’s Fouled-Up Election


The events that unfolded in Haiti’s presidential elections yesterday came as no surprise. There was  fraud, confusion and mayhem. It had been predicted. Voters showed up to polls and did not find their names on registration lists. In some instances, there were not enough ballots. In others, people arrived to find that polling centers were still […]

Rape a Part of Daily Life for Women in Haitian Relief Camps

haitian IDP camp

Even after the aftershocks of the devastating Jan. 12 quake subsided, women’s bodies were still trembling in Haiti. The cause, according to a new report, is the systematic, persistent (and often gang) rapes that have become part of women’s daily lives in camps for internally displaced persons (IDP). The report, entitled Our Bodies Are Still […]

Goudougoudou: Earthquake Memories from Haiti

Peacekeeping - MINUSTAH

The earthquake that decimated various parts of Haiti six months ago actually has an affectionate nickname: Goudougoudou. Everyone uses the term. There are several jokes, from mild to spicy, about what to do in the event of another Goudougoudou, especially while one is engaged in any kind of private activity, from using the toilet to […]

Haiti’s Women 6 Months Later: Getting Back to Work

Makeshift Salons Open in Camp for Displaced Haitians

Nearly six months after the earthquake in Haiti, those of us involved in the UN humanitarian response are still struggling to provide those who have survived sexual violence with access to services they need–not an easy task, since there wasn’t much in the way of services for them to begin with. At the same time, […]

Haiti Post-Quake: In Unity We Find Strength


Today is Flag Day in Haiti. This symbol of Haitian freedom was sewn by Catherine Flon–I mentioned her in a previous post–on this date in 1803. Catherine created a symbol that represents the struggles for freedom in Haiti and the heroes and heroines who made it possible. The flag is blue and red, with the phrase […]