My friend Tom Bissell on Kapuściński’s death in 2007 from the NYT here:
Kapuscinski saw more, and more clearly, if not always perfectly, than nearly any writer one can think to name. Few have written more beautifully of unspeakable things. Few have had his courage, almost none his talent. His books changed the way many of us think about nonfiction and made many of us want to travel for ourselves and see for ourselves. Herodotus, Kapuscinski reasonably imagines, interviewed many of his subjects by campfire. “Later, these will be called legends and myths, but in the instant when they are first being related and heard, the tellers and the listeners believe in them as the holiest of truths, absolute reality,” he writes. And so “the fire burns, someone adds more wood, the flames’ renewed warmth quickens thought, awakens the imagination.” When the last page of this book is turned, note how much smaller and colder the world now seems with Kapuscinski gone.