Nobel Peace Prize winner, Aung San Suu Kyi, is a symbol of supreme courage in the face of tyranny. Released from house arrest in 2010, she led her party to a dramatic victory in Burma’s first free general election in a generation.
Acclaimed biographer, Peter Popham, describes how, inspired by her leadership, Burma has found its voice and transformed its destiny. However greater freedom has brought with it other troubles.
The Lady and the Generals offers a compelling portrait of this fascinating country and asks where Burma and Suu Kyi – with her bravery, her charisma and her limitations – are heading next.
Praise for The Lady and the Peacock, also by Peter Popham
'What a gift to our world and what a splendid telling of [Aung San Suu Kyi's life]. We are deeply indebted to Peter Popham for such a superb account' - Archbishop Desmond Tutu
'Sensitive and moving' - Sunday Times
'Beautifully written and compelling in every aspect' - Joanna Lumley
'Warm and objective...will not be bettered for a long time' - Independent on Sunday
Peter Popham's major new biography of Aung San Suu Kyi draws upon previously untapped testimony and fresh revelations to tell the story of a woman whose bravery and determination have captivated people around the globe. Celebrated today as one of the world's greatest exponents of non-violent political defiance since Mahatma Gandhi, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize only four years after her first experience of politics.
In April 1988, Suu Kyi returned from Britain to Burma to nurse her sick mother but, within six months, found herself the unchallenged leader of the largest popular revolt in the history of Burma. When the party she co-founded won a landslide victory in Burma's first free elections for thirty years, she was already under house arrest and barred from taking office by the military junta.
Since then, 'The Lady' has set about transforming her country ethically as well as politically, displaying dazzling courage in the process. Under house arrest for 15 of the previous 20 years, she has come close to being killed by her political enemies and her commitment to peaceful revolution has come at extreme personal cost.
In November 2010, after fraudulent elections in which she played no part, Suu Kyi was again freed. She was greeted by ecstatic crowds but only time will tell what role this remarkable woman will have in the future of her country.
Peter Popham has toured Burma as an undercover journalist many times since his first visit to the country in 1991. A foreign correspondent and commentator with the Independent newspaper, he covered South Asia (including Burma) for a period in the late 90s. Popham interviewed Suu Kyi when she was released from house arrest in 2002, and has met her again several times. He lives in London.