The Nepal Scene- Chronicles of Elizabeth Hawley: 1988-2007 (Set of 2 Volumes)

The Nepal Scene- Chronicles of Elizabeth Hawley: 1988-2007 (Set of 2 Volumes)

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Book Specification

Item Code: UAO273
Author: Lisa Choegyal and Mikel Dunham
Publisher: Vajra Books, Nepal
Language: English
Edition: 2015
ISBN: 978937623407
Pages: 2052
Other Details 10.00 X 7.00 inch
Weight 3.11 kg

Book Description

About the Authors
Based in Nepal for 40 years, Lisa Choegyal is a tourism specialist and a longtime associate of Elizabeth Hawley, working with her at Tiger Mountain and subsequently as New Zealand Honorary Consul. Choegyal has several books to her credit, including Kathmandu Valley Style and Afghanistan Revisited.

Mikel Dunham is a photojournalist, historian. and author of Buddha's Warriors, Samye, and Caught in Nepal. Based in Los Angeles, Dunham's blog on Nepal and Tibetan issues reaches a worldwide.

My first association with Liz Hawley was as an intern helping her out at Reuters in the early 1980s. I was just starting out in the media, and she was my first on-the-jobs journalium guru, even before I went to journalism school, Most of the news from Nepal in those days was about mountaineering, and Liz didn't just cover.

them, she carefully documented every climb, It was during the monsoon break in Himalayan mountaineering that Liz would go off to the US on her long summer vacations. For a couple of summers, I was left to hold the fort. Inevitably all hell would break lose in the politics in Kathmandu while she was away, and reinforcements would have to be parachuted in from the Reuters office in Delhi.

I would sometimes go to the Tiger Tops office in Durbar Marg to see Lit, and she would be sitting at her desk from where she had a ringside view of the street outside. Peering over her glasses. she didn't miss anything. She would almost always be writing something in her portable typewriter. and I remember thinking it must have been some administrative work she was catching up with. Now, reading the manuscript of this compilation, I am sure she was working on one of these monthly dispatches to Jim Edwards. As these pages show, Liz had a clinical attention to facts and detail-to a point where some would find it overwhelming and dull. But the value of her painstaking work over the decades is now evident this is an invaluable archive of the most notable political and other goings-on in Nepal of the past decades. This is going to be a reference tool for this period for journalists, diplomats, academics and researchers into the future. The most important part of her work was her mountaineering database. Himalayan mountaineers often told me they dreaded their post-ascent debriefing with Liz in Kathmandu more than the climb itself. And if Liz did not verify that so-and-so had climbed such-and-such, then it would not be official.

Liz has her idiosyncrasies. She is aloof not in a negative sense, but as reporters are taught to be aloof, to keep their distance and perspective on the events around them. But this didn't mean that Liz is just a stenographer, she has strong views on democracy, freedom and human dignity, and she is outraged by injustice and wrongs. Reading between the lines of these dry dispatches, one sometimes catches glimpses of the Liz within.

Elizabeth Hawley's detailed account of Nepal's long years of struggle allows the reader to revisit and relive an entire nation's quest for change. Since the middle of the twentieth century, Nepal has been s nation in transition, in search of a new political, social and economic order. That search continues oday. The Nepal Scene admirably covers all aspects of this struggle between 1988 and 2007, crucial years of change within the country. With keen observation. Miss Hawley records Nepal's happenings won an almost daily basis and hers is a uniquely well-informed perspective.

I have observed these two decades closely and have been integrally involved as part of the governing structure during some of the period, both in Kathmandu and as Ambassador to the US and India. I find Miss Hawley's document to be honest, objective, and without bias, and it deserves to be treasured as such.

It is also an exciting tale. Miss Hawley leads the reader into a harrowing journey through shocking and recurring tragedies. The political change that ended with the 1990 Constitution, for instance, brought democracy to the center-stage of governance. This was seen by many as the end of one era and the beginning of a new one. It was not to be. No sooner had the ink dried on the 1990 Constitution than a period of violent insurgency took over, exacting a heavy toll on the country and its people. Many lives were lost, and the very social foundation upon which Nepal had been built was disrupted and displaced.

As Miss Hawley's chronicles clearly point out, the year 2001 will be remembered as an especially critical and difficult phase of Nepal's history. The massacre at the Royal Palace in June of that year altered the course of Nepal in a wholly unforeseen manner. I believe that the massacre injected uncertainty into Nepal, and prolonged the conflict, the effect of which lingers even today long after the end of the monarchy. Nepal's transition to democracy and better governance has become ever more difficult and time consuming since then. Change is occurring, but too slowly and many challenges remain. One phase of Nepal's history may have ended, but a new and open-ended chapter continues. I admire Miss Hawley's ability to articulate all of these changes so faithfully in her unparalleled detailed chronicles. The reader would do these volumes justice by reading them carefully and attentively.

Elizabeth Hawley, an American journalist living in Nepal since 1960, is regarded as the undisputed authority on mountaineering in Nepal a "one-woman mountaineering institution" famed worldwide for systematically compiling a detailed Himalayan database of expeditions that dates back to when she first came to live in Kathmandu.

What is less known is that Elizabeth Hawley applied the same scrupulous precision to summarizing the political and development events in Nepal. Beginning in November 1988 and ending in May 2007, she compiled chronicles on a monthly basis and referred to her work as "The Nepal Scene". They are a faithful and unique historical record of the extraordinary changes that took place in Nepal for nearly two decades, and which forever changed the Himalayan country's political landscape Never before published and written for a tightly restricted audience, Elizabeth's monthly political summaries were prepared for AV Jim Edwards, the adventure tourism ploneer, as part of her job working for him at Tiger Tops and Mountain Travel Nepal. Jim relied on her information to stay briefed on Nepal affairs during his extensive business travels out of the country. Jim valued them greatly, and shared them only occasionally with select friends such as the British, American or New Zealand ambassadors. In my role at Tiger Tops working with Jim and Elizabeth, I was aware of the existence of her monthly reports, but it was not until author Mikel Dunham focused on them in the course of his Nepal book research that we realized what an invaluable resource they are for historians. After a friendship of 40 years, Elizabeth needed little persuasion to allow us to publish them, her one proviso being that any proceeds be shared between the Himalayan Database in the US and Himalayan Trust in Nepal Mikel and I have tried to preserve the immediacy and freshness of her monthly reports, which were written in WordPerfect on her ancient computer just days or at most weeks after events happened. There is no benefit of hindsight, and each month was written to stand on its own. We have left them that way, rather than weave them into a coherent story or change Elizabeth's tight prose style. The repetitions and speculations are part of the vibrancy that brings each month to life on the written page.

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

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