Danger Pay: Memoir of a Photojournalist in the Middle East, 1984-1994 by Carol Spencer Mitchell

Danger Pay: Memoir of a Photojournalist in the Middle East, 1984-1994

byCarol Spencer MitchellEditorEllen Spencer Susman

Hardcover | November 1, 2008

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about

"You're going where?" Carol Spencer Mitchell's father demanded as she set off in 1984 to cover the Middle East as a photojournalist for Newsweek and other publications. In this intensely thoughtful memoir, Spencer Mitchell probes the motivations that impelled her, a single, Jewish woman, to document the turmoil roiling the Arab world in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as how her experiences as a photojournalist "compelled [me] to set aside [my] cameras and reexamine the way images are created, scenes are framed, and how 'real life' is packaged for specific news stories."

In Danger Pay, Spencer Mitchell takes us on a harrowing journey to PLO military training camps for Palestinian children and to refugee camps in the Gaza Strip before, during, and after the first intifada. Through her eyes, we experience the media frenzy surrounding the 1985 hijackings of TWA Flight #847 and the Italian cruise liner Achille Lauro. We meet Middle Eastern leaders, in particular Yasser Arafat and King Hussein of Jordan, with whom Spencer Mitchell developed close working relationships. And we witness Spencer Mitchell's growing conviction that the Western media's portrayal of conflicts in the Middle East actually helps to fuel those conflicts—a conviction that eventually, as she says, "shattered my career."

Although the events that Spencer Mitchell records took place a generation ago, their repercussions reverberate in the conflicts going on in the Middle East today. Likewise, her concern about "the triumph of image over reality" takes on greater urgency as our knowledge of the world becomes ever more filtered by virtual media.

About The Author

Carol Spencer Mitchell (1954–2004) covered the Middle East and North Africa for many leading U.S. and European publications, including Newsweek, Time, U.S. News & World Report, Look, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday, and the Philadelphia Inquirer. Ellen Spencer Susman, Carol’s sister, is current...

Details & Specs

Title:Danger Pay: Memoir of a Photojournalist in the Middle East, 1984-1994Format:HardcoverDimensions:215 pages, 9.34 × 6.26 × 0.89 inPublished:November 1, 2008Publisher:University Of Texas PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0292718829

ISBN - 13:9780292718821

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Table of Contents

  • Foreword
  • Acknowledgments
  • Prologue
  • Part I: There's a New Kid in Town
    • 1. The Burning Bush
    • 2. Reorienting
    • 3. Crossing the Bridge
    • 4. Ode to Abu Ammar
    • 5. Gaza Slick
    • 6. Photo Op
    • 7. A Room with a View
  • Part II: The Moment and the Mask
    • 1. His Majesty
    • 2. Let's Get Some Color
    • 3. House of Hashem
    • 4. Up, Up, and Away
    • 5. Private Conversations (I)
  • Part III: Passing Through
    • 1. TWA Flight #847
    • 2. Exile
    • 3. Cruising
    • 4. Caviar, Khat, and Cover Pix
  • Part IV: Inside Terror, Inc.
    • 1. Dance into Darkness
    • 2. Journalists Are Used to Danger
    • 3. He Who Builds
    • 4. Private Conversations (II)
    • 5. Promise Me I Won't Be Touched
    • 6. Lebanon
  • Part V: Travels in Sudan
    • 1. Sorry, All Lines Are Jammed
    • 2. Wau (Wow!)
    • 3. I Don't Know What I'm Feeling
    • 4. You Need Something to Peg the Story On
  • Part VI: The Striptease
    • 1. Everybody Must Get Stoned
    • 2. Photo-Realism, the "Real" Picture, and the Ingathering
    • 3. The Striptease
  • Part VII: The Mother of All Battles
    • 1. What the Hell Am I Doing?
    • 2. The Sealed Room
    • 3. The Striptease, Take 2
  • Epilogue
  • 1. The Old Man
  • 2. War on Another Front

Editorial Reviews

"A deeply felt and moving account from an enterprising and conscientious news photographer who worked the always busy beat of the Middle East in the last, great days of film photography." - Rod Nordland, Chief Foreign Correspondent, Newsweek