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Suggested Reading


Looking for some information, encouragement, and inspiration? Check out the recommended Haiti reading lists that we’ve divided into the following categories:

1) Popular      2) Historical      3) Analytical      4) Cultural      5) Autobiographical      6) Inspirational

 (Scroll to the bottom of the page to download the PDF version of these lists.)


*Are you an educator? Do you want to view the most COMPREHENSIVE compilation of books, articles, teaching guides, documentaries, and films that we have found? If so, Click Here.


1) Popular

Mountains Beyond Mountains (Tracy Kidder)

Tells the story of Paul Farmer, a boy brought up on a bus and in a boat, who later went to Harvard and set out on a mission to cure infectious disease in Haiti.

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Haiti After the Earthquake (Paul Farmer)

Takes a deeper look at post-earthquake relief efforts and analyzes which efforts succeeded and which efforts failed.

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2) Historical

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (Michel-Rolph Trouillot)

Delves into “the most successful slave revolt in history” and takes look at how power has played a role in key historical events around the world.

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Toussaint Louverture (Madison Smartt Bell)

An engaging biography of Toussaint Louverture, the “controversial, paradoxical leader” who led the first successful slave revolt in history and helped Haiti gain independence.

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Avengers of the New World (Laurent Dubois)

Tells the story of the Haitian Revolution from the points of view of slaves and free people in Haiti and highlights issues of democracy and human rights.

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The Comedians (Graham Greene)

A fictional but thought-provoking account of three men traveling on a ship to Haiti during a time when Papa Doc and his corrupt secret police ruled Haiti.

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3) Analytical

Haiti: The Aftershocks of History (Laurent Dubois)

Analyzes the root of Haiti’s current poverty and troubles and highlights “the foundation on which a new Haiti might yet emerge.”

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4) Cultural

Dancing on Fire (Maggie Steber)

An extraordinary book with vivid photographs capturing moments in Haiti’s history where, despite the tragedy and hardship that exists, individuals still dare to smile and remain hopeful.

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Under a Grudging Sun (Alex Webb)

A collection of vibrant photographs that takes its audience into the heart of Haiti and shows never-before-seen sides of life.

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Voodoo in Haiti (Alfred Metraux)

An excellent account of the history and origin of voodoo as well as the lives and rituals of Haitian mambos and adepts.

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Compas Direct: A Haitian Pride: The Road to Hollywood

A book that highlights the beauty and power of Haiti’s world class music.

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Letters from the Other Side of Haiti: A Long Way Down (Jilayna Adamson)

This book shows a different side of Haiti that is often ignored by the media. While hardship exists, the hope, joy, compassion, and contentment outshines all else.

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5) Autobiographical

Brother, I’m Dying (Edwidge Danticat)

The intense story of a young Haitian girl who had to make a new life in the US with her family  and, from an early age, was constantly confronted with terrifying situations.

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6) Inspirational

Heartache and Hope in Haiti: The Britney Gengel Story: Making our Daughter’s Last Wish Come True (Len Gengel, Cherylann Gengel, Gary Brozek)

The story of an American family that founded an orphanage in Grand Goave, Haiti, in honor of their daughter, a college sophomore who dreamt of opening an orphanage in Haiti but died tragically in the 2010 earthquake before carrying out her dream herself.

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Haiti Reading List  (Compiled by staff of SFH)                                                                                                                     Haitian Proverbs  (Compliments of Teaching for Change organization)

Useful Links

Teaching for Change

An extensive list of books, pamphlets, articles, teaching guides, posters & films about Haiti compiled by an organization that incorporates the topic of social justice into modern education.

Haiti Rewired

A compilation of texts that uncover Haiti's infrastructural past and seek to answer the question: What geographical, biological, social, technological, and political factors have shaped the roads, networks, and tools available to Haitians today? 

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