A remarkable and controversial book about the reality of modern Africa by distinguished American reporter, Blaine Harden. This remarkable book is the first to get behind the picture post-card presentation of modern Africa. harden reveals the true and often unsightly picture of this vast continent. The issues he addresses - the incompetent ...
A remarkable and controversial book about the reality of modern Africa by distinguished American reporter, Blaine Harden. This remarkable book is the first to get behind the picture post-card presentation of modern Africa. harden reveals the true and often unsightly picture of this vast continent. The issues he addresses - the incompetent intervention of Western governments and the battle between the tribal way of life and modernity - are presented through lucid and gripping stories about individual people and incidents Harden has known. He himself was once thrown out of Kenya for the strength and accuracy of his reporting; this book will cause and equal stir in the debate about where Africa is going and what itis becoming.
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Publishers Weekly, 1990-08-17 After 30 years of independence, Africa relies on foreign aid that is based more on Western computations than on the domestic needs of countries that lack national identities. Only in Botswana does democracy work; elsewhere, the ``Big Man Disease'' prevails, notes the author. Focusing on individuals but combining travel, history, politics, economics and generalities of African society, Washington Post correspondent Harden explores the indigenous systems that help hold ``the whole sorry mess'' together. He shows how Liberian Samuel Doe's talk about democracy attracted American aid dollars, which he used to shore up the vacillating support of his countrymen. Harden's experiences on a Congo river boat suggest that Zaire is pervaded by the attitude of its president, who has ``made his billions the old-fashioned way. He stole it.'' The account of a trial in Nairobi to determine where to bury a Luo lawyer is an allegory for the most wrenching conflict of modern African life: the rub between tribal tradition and modern Western values. For those who don't know Africa, this outstanding book is a good place to start. Photos not seen by PW. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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