Duncan Greenberg Yale World Fellow
Finbarr O’Reilly is an author and photographer who has spent the past 15 years living and working mostly in Africa and the Middle East. He began his journalism career as a writer in Canada and was based in West and Central Africa for Reuters between 2001 and 2012, covering conflict and social issues across the continent. He turned to photography in 2005 and in 2006 was awarded the World Press Photo of the Year. Finbarr has since won numerous top industry awards for his multimedia work and photography, which has been exhibited internationally. He has published long-term projects on Congo and Afghanistan and is among those profiled in Under Fire: Journalists in Combat, a documentary film about the psychological costs of covering war. The film won a 2013 Peabody Award and was shortlisted for a 2012 Academy Award. He was the Reuters senior photographer for Israel and the Palestinian Territories in 2014 and covered the July-August war from Gaza. Finbarr was a 2013 Nieman Fellow at Harvard, where he spent a year studying psychology, and a 2014 Ochberg Fellow at the Columbia University’s DART Center for Journalism and Trauma. He is the co-author of Shooting Ghosts, due to be published by the Viking/ Penguin/ Random House in 2017. The book is about the residual effects of war and the relationship between individual trauma and society, told through the story of his unlikely friendship with co-author Sgt. Thomas James Brennan, a U.S. Marine who was injured during a Taliban ambush while on a combat patrol with Finbarr in Afghanistan. The intertwined narrative – part war story, part memoir, part psychological exploration – will take readers from the front lines of battle and military culture to the cutting edge of medical research and treatment to show how trauma can be managed and overcome.