The Lady and the Peacock: The Life of Aung San Suu Kyi

( 3 )

Overview

Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi—known to the world as an icon for democracy and nonviolent dissent in oppressed Burma, and to her followers as simply “The Lady”—has recently returned to international headlines. Now, this major new biography offers essential reading at a moment when Burma, after decades of stagnation, is once again in flux.

Suu Kyi’s remarkable life begins with that of her father, Aung San. The architect of Burma’s independence, he was assassinated ...

See more details below
Paperback
$14.12
BN.com price
(Save 16%)$16.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (15) from $1.99   
  • New (8) from $4.58   
  • Used (7) from $1.99   
The Lady and the Peacock: The Life of Aung San Suu Kyi

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.99
BN.com price
(Save 35%)$16.95 List Price

Overview

Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi—known to the world as an icon for democracy and nonviolent dissent in oppressed Burma, and to her followers as simply “The Lady”—has recently returned to international headlines. Now, this major new biography offers essential reading at a moment when Burma, after decades of stagnation, is once again in flux.

Suu Kyi’s remarkable life begins with that of her father, Aung San. The architect of Burma’s independence, he was assassinated when she was only two. Suu Kyi grew up in India (where her mother served as ambassador), studied at Oxford, and worked for three years at the UN in New York. In 1972, she married Michael Aris, a British scholar. They had two sons, and for several years she lived as a self-described “housewife”—but she never forgot that she was the daughter of Burma’s national hero.

In April 1988, Suu Kyi returned to Burma to nurse her sick mother. Within six months, she was leading the largest popular revolt in the country’s history. She was put under house arrest by the regime, but her party won a landslide victory in the 1990 elections, which the regime refused to recognize. In 1991, still under arrest, she received the Nobel Peace Prize. Altogether, she has spent over fifteen years in detention and narrowly escaped assassination twice.

Peter Popham distills five years of research—including covert trips to Burma, meetings with Suu Kyi and her friends and family, and extracts from the unpublished diaries of her co-campaigner and former confidante Ma Thanegi—into this vivid portrait of Aung San Suu Kyi, illuminating her public successes and private sorrows, her intellect and enduring sense of humor, her commitment to peaceful revolution, and the extreme price she has paid for it.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Popham (Tokyo: The City at the End of the World) paints a sympathetic and well-rounded portrait of Burmese dissident Aung San Suu Kyi in this timely biography. In 1988, Suu, daughter of Aung San, the man widely regarded as the founder of modern Burma, returned from Britain to her homeland to care for her elderly mother. Over the next six years, Suu—known to her fellow citizens as "The Lady"—would rise to the fore of the country's largest popular revolution to democratize, receive the Nobel Peace Prize, and finally find herself consigned to house arrest by a military junta, an imprisonment that would last for 15 of the past 20 years. Drawing on secret trips to Burma, meetings with Suu, letters, diaries, interviews, and published materials, Popham tells of Suu's meteoric rise to "the heart of the Burmese conundrum," her unwavering quest for democracy, and her unwillingness to abandon her supporters and party, the National League for Democracy (whose flag features a fighting peacock). In addition to recounting Suu's remarkable life story, Popham, a foreign correspondent for The Independent, deftly outlines the political climate of the troubled nation, and shows how this revolutionary woman became a global symbol of democracy, resolve, and freedom. While outlining her honesty, perfectionism, and commitment to nonviolence, Popham deals gently with criticisms of her efforts, conceding that her greatest strength was not her political savvy, but her moral compass. Photos. (Apr. 1)
From the Publisher
“[A] rich new biography of Burma’s most famous dissident.”
NewYorker.com

“Peter Popham’s vivid new biography, The Lady and the Peacock, illuminates the qualities that have made [Aung San Suu Kyi] one of the twenty-first century’s great political personalities.”
—New York Review of Books

“Peter Popham tells this story superbly in The Lady and the Peacock: The Life of Aung San Suu Kyi, by far the best book yet written on this elusive heroine.”
The Wall Street Journal

“In the latest, and very timely, biography of Aung San Suu Kyi, Peter Popham ably chronicles the incredible story of her life.”
The New Republic

“Peter Popham’s life of Aung San Suu Kyi is gripping, partisan and emotional . . . It contains fascinating new material and conveys, better than any other account, the stirring drama of her confrontations with the junta. But perhaps the most interesting thing about it is its timing. . . . The Lady and the Peacock is an essential record of the struggle for democracy in Burma before the mysteries and promise of the Thein Sein era: a reminder of the 49 long years that preceded eight breathless months of reform.”
London Review of Books

“Peter Popham’s richly detailed biography sheds new light on Burma’s heroine and the still unfolding struggle against military oppression she personifies. An important book.”
Joseph Lelyveld, author of Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle with India

“A masterly narration of the life of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi . . . She makes one proud to be human in her company. What a gift to our world and what a splendid telling of it in this book. We are deeply indebted to Peter Popham for such a superb account.”
Archbishop Desmond Tutu

“This is the definitive and superbly written account of one of the most intriguing and admirable political and moral figures of our times.”
Pankaj Mishra, author of An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World

“A spellbinding biography of Aung San Suu Kyi . . . provides a complex and nuanced portrait of her on so many levels.”
The Huffington Post

“Popham paints a sympathetic and well-rounded portrait of Burmese dissident Aung San Suu Kyi in this timely biography. . . . In addition to recounting Suu's remarkable life story, Popham, a foreign correspondent for The Independent, deftly outlines the political climate of the troubled nation, and shows how this revolutionary woman became a global symbol of democracy, resolve, and freedom.”
Publishers Weekly

“Peter Popham’s biography of Aung San Suu Kyi could not be better timed, as the woman who has been the real leader of her country is at last free to participate openly in its politics. This book provides a rich and often surprising portrait of Burma and of Aung San Suu Kyi and her family, which for more than half a century has played a central role in the country’s drama. As an age of reform seems in sight for Burma, The Lady and the Peacock sheds exceptional light on its prospects and on the experiences that have shaped its coming generation of leaders.”
James Fallows, Atlantic Monthly, author of China Airborne

“We live in a time of political pygmies, but even in an age of giants Aung San Suu Kyi would stand out. Peter Popham's The Lady and the Peacock provides a compelling account of her life and career. Her intellectual evolution is deftly sketched, her marriage portrayed without sentimentality and her struggle against authoritarianism carefully outlined. Reading the book, one desperately hopes that by shaking the hand of the ‘world’ leaders who now line up to meet her, Suu Kyi transfers some of her exceptional courage on to them.”
Ramachandra Guha, author of India after Gandhi: The History of the World's Largest Democracy

“If the generals think they can control Suu Kyi, they would do well to read . . . Popham’s biography.”
The Progressive

“An inspiring biography and a rare glimpse of what Burma could have been, and could still be. . . In the aftermath of the first, tentative loosening of the military’s death grip over the country, Suu Kyi’s next chapter remains to be written. For now, enjoy this compassionate biography of an exemplary leader.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Readers interested in modern Asian history and current events will find this book well worth reading.”
Library Journal

“The most comprehensive, accessible, honest, and fair biography of Aung San Suu Kyi to date, blowing away all previous efforts . . . The Lady and the Peacock will leave the reader inspired.”
Benedict Rogers, author of Burma: A Nation at the Crossroads

“A brilliant portrait of the most famous political detainee of our time, Popham’s book illuminates not just Aung San Suu Kyi but an entire nation as it makes its twisted, uneasy journey into modernity.”
Siddhartha Deb, author of The Beautiful And The Damned: A Portrait of the New India

“In this eloquent and evocative biography, Peter Popham supplies fresh insights into the personality of the stoic lady who is the symbol of Burma’s democratic aspirations. Aung San Suu Kyi’s success or failure is measured in terms of her own ethical yardstick rather than the calculus of state power.”
Sugata Bose, author of His Majesty’s Opponent: Subhas Chandra Bose and India’s Struggle against Empire

“Suu Kyi emerges as a wonderfully human figure, adding a softer dimension to the remotely beautiful, stubbornly determined, unfailingly polite, and breathtakingly brave woman.”
The Times (London)

“A portrait both warm and objective . . . it will not be bettered for a long time.”
Independent on Sunday

“The first serious biography of Aung San Suu Kyi.”
Democracy: A Journal of Ideas

Library Journal
The history of Burma since World War II has been nothing but chaotic, with uprisings, endemic social unrest, economic disasters, rebellions among tribal groups, and iron-fisted military rule. The military junta, moreover, carefully controls access to information for both the domestic and the foreign press, and travel in and out of Burma is very limited. Repression is severe and civil rights for dissidents minimal. Aung San Suu Kyi, the daughter of Aung San, the first of Burma's democratic leaders after the war, has for three decades been trying to change all that. Her story is one of heroic and purposeful resistance, strength of character, prudence in her statements, and care about the welfare of her followers and Burma's people. Popham (foreign correspondent, Independent; Tokyo: The City at the End of the World) has written a dense and highly detailed book, as much a history of modern Burma as it is a biography of Suu Kyi. VERDICT Although there is almost too much information to absorb and almost too many disparate political and social "players" to keep track of, readers interested in modern Asian history and current events will find this book well worth reading.—James F. DeRoche, Alexandria, VA
Kirkus Reviews
An inspiring biography and a rare glimpse of what Burma could have been, and could still be. Aung San Suu Kyi, one of the world's most famous female politicians, is unusual in that she has never held an official position of power. The daughter of Aung San, Burma's national hero, Suu Kyi was a housewife, scholar and low-level functionary of the United Nations before her mother's illness forced her to return to the land of her birth in the late 1980s. Thrust to the head of the nation's protest movement, she helped found the National League for Democracy and led the party to a landslide victory at the polls. However, the results of the election were nullified, and she has spent most of the years since under house arrest. Independent foreign correspondent Popham (Tokyo: The City at the End of the World, 1985) ably chronicles the trials and tribulations of a nation that has been imprisoned and brutalized by an avaricious, paranoid military junta, an entity that has never demonstrated the slightest hint of concern for its victims' welfare. The picture that emerges is of a stoically determined woman of uncommon fortitude who gave up the chance to say goodbye to her dying husband in order to stay in Burma when her country needed her, and who has never considered shying away from the duty she inherited to shepherd her people to self-determination. Against the odds, she has survived assassination attempts. Finally set free in 2011, "she emerged, to the jubilation of thousands of her supporters and the relief of the world, into a new landscape where she had no role." In the aftermath of the first, tentative loosening of the military's death grip over the country, Suu Kyi's next chapter remains to be written. For now, enjoy this compassionate biography of an exemplary leader.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781615190812
  • Publisher: Experiment, The
  • Publication date: 4/30/2013
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 514,315
  • Product dimensions: 5.68 (w) x 8.04 (h) x 1.29 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Popham has toured Burma as an undercover journalist several times since his first visit to the country in 1991. A foreign correspondent and feature writer for the Independent for more than twenty years, he has reported from locations around the world, including South Asia. He is also the author of Tokyo: The City at the End of the World. Married, with two children, Popham lives and works in both London and Milan.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 21, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Aung San Suu Kyi is a remarkable figure. She is a peaceful fight

    Aung San Suu Kyi is a remarkable figure. She is a peaceful fighter for her country’s freedom, a winner of the Noble Peace Prize, and an inspiration to many around the globe who yearn for freedom from all sorts of oppressions. She seems to be the rightful heir to some other giants of the non-violent struggle in recent times, notably Marthin Luther King Jr. and Mohandas Mahatma Gandhi. She is equally admired for her determination and resilience, as well as the simple and unassuming charisma that she has exhibited over the course of almost quarter of a century of involvement in Burmese politics. 




    This is a very well written and detailed book about the life of Aung San Suu Kyi – the “Lady” from the title – and to the much lesser extent about the Burmese pro-democracy party that she is heading – the “peacock.” The book covers some of the lesser-known aspects of Suu Kyi’s life, including parts of her private life that have been hinted at in the media but have in large part remained hidden. In fact, it’s the personal aspects of her struggle that I find the most heart-rending and painful to read about. The sacrifice of separation form her family and the inability to be at her husband’s side during his dying days would have been too much to bear for anyone. 




    Even though Suu Kyi is by any account a heroic figure, it remains unclear how effective her tactics have been in bringing the change and reform to Burma. Popham paints a very sympathetic picture of her political engagement, but after reading this book I am left feeling that Suu Kyi might lack the savvy and political shrewdness necessary to be an effective agent of change. However, this is all very speculative as the political situation in Burma can often defy all rational expectations. 




    Even though this is a very interesting and readable book, it is not without a couple of shortcomings. For one, Suu Kyi herself, primarily due to her severe isolation, been able to contribute much direct material for a biography of this kind. Most of the material on which the book was based comes from second- and third-hand sources. Furthermore, the arrangement of the material does not follow a strictly linear progression in time. The narrative jumps back and forth a couple of times, which can be mildly annoying. 




    Overall, I really liked this book but I really hope that one day Suu Kyi will be able to write an autobiography – and one with a very happy ending despite all the travails she had gone through. 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)