The San Francisco Chronicle – Review of Facing the Torturer by Francois Bizot

Near the end of Bob Dylan‘s antiwar ballad “John Brown,” which tells the story of a young man ruined by battle, a traumatized soldier’s brokenhearted mother asks him what the hell happened out there. He mentions the usual – the anguish of killing, the constant fear of death – then says, “But the thing that scared me most was when my enemy came close/ And I saw that his face looked just like mine.”

That idea – the haunting disorientation of finding the familiar where you least expect, or want, to find it – lies at the very heart of French ethnologist François Bizot’s grave, contemplative new book, “Facing the Torturer.”

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