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City's ‘WeHo Reads’ Series Presents Congo Stories: Battling Five Centuries of Exploitation and Greed

Post Date:December 06, 2018 8:14 AM

congostoriesThe City of West Hollywood celebrates the literary community with its WeHo Reads program, a series featuring noteworthy authors at the West Hollywood Library, and presented in conjunction with Book Soup.

On Monday, December 10, 2018, at 7 p.m., the next WeHo Reads series event will feature Congo Stories: Battling Five Centuries of Exploitation and Greed by John Prendergast and Fidel Bafilemba, with photographs by Ryan Gosling. The event will take place at 7 p.m. at the City’s Council Chambers/Public Meeting Room at West Hollywood Library, located at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. It will feature a discussion and book-signing with the book’s authors and photographer as well as with Congolese journalist Chouchou Namegabe. Free parking is available in the adjacent five-story parking structure with validation at the event.

John Prendergast, author of the New York Times bestselling and award-winning book Not on Our Watch, co-writes this compelling book with Fidel Bafilemba — with stunning photographs by Ryan Gosling — revealing the way in which the people and resources of the Democratic Republic of Congo have been used throughout the last five centuries to build, develop, advance, and safeguard the United States and Europe. The book highlights the devastating price that Congo has paid for that support. However, the way the world deals with Congo is finally changing, and the book tells the remarkable stories of those in Congo and the United States leading that transformation. 

Through Gosling’s photographs of Congolese daily life, Bafilemba’s profiles of heroic Congolese activists, and Prendergast’s narratives of the extraordinary history and evolving social movements that directly link Congo with the United States and Europe, Congo Stories provides windows into the history, the people, the challenges, the possibilities, and the movements that could change the course of Congo’s destiny.

General admission tickets are $29 and are available on Eventbrite. A limited quantity of free-entry tickets (which do not include a copy of the book) will be provided to West Hollywood residents on a first-come, first-served basis. Proof of residency via a government ID, lease, or utility bill is required. Confirm your address is in the City of West Hollywood at There is a two-ticket limit per resident. Tickets may not be resold. Reserve resident tickets in advance by sending an email message to Mike Che at The physical tickets must be picked up by 6 p.m. on the night of the event or they will be released to those on standby.

The City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division, part of the City’s Economic Development Department, delivers a broad array of arts programs including: Art on the Outside (temporary public art), Urban Art Program (permanent public art), Summer Sounds, Winter Sounds, WeHo Reads, Free Theatre in the Parks, Arts Grants, Library Exhibits, the City Poet Laureate Program, Human Rights Speaker Series, and the One City One Pride LGBTQ Arts Festival. More information is available at

For additional information about this WeHo Reads event, please visit

For more information, please contact Mike Che, Arts Coordinator, City of West Hollywood at (323) 848-6377 or For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing, please call TTY (323) 848-6496. For up-to-date news and events, follow the City of West Hollywood on social media @WeHoCity and sign up for news updates at

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