The gripping saga of one of the world's most devastated
The Democratic Republic of Congo currently ranks among the
world's most failed nation-states, second only to war-torn Somalia.
David Van Reybrouck's Congo: The Epic History of a People traces
the history of this devastated nation from the beginnings of the
slave trade through the arrival of Sir Henry Morton Stanley, the
ivory and rubber booms, colonization, the struggle for
independence, and the three decades of Mobutu's brutal rule. Van
Reybrouck also examines the civil war--the world's deadliest
conflict since the Second World War. Still raging today after
seventeen years, the Congolese war is driven, in part, by the
demand for the rare-earth minerals required to make cell
Van Reybrouck has balanced hundreds of interviews with
meticulous historical research to construct a many-dimensional
portrait of the rich and convoluted history of Congo. Taking pains
to seek out the Congolese perspective on the country's history, Van
Reybrouck creates a panoramic canvas wherein the child soldiers
whom he encounters in the eastern rebel territories talk candidly
about their choices and misfortunes, and where elderly
Congolese--some of them more than one hundred years old--reminisce
about their lives in a country where the average life expectancy
has dropped to forty-five.
Vast in scope yet eminently readable, both penetrating and
deeply moving, Congo does for Africa what Robert Hughes's masterful
and novelistic The Fatal Shore did for Australia. Van Reybrouck
takes a deeply humane approach to political history, focusing
squarely on the Congolese perspective and returning a nation's
history to its people. Published to rave reviews in Belgium and the
Netherlands in 2010, Congo has now been gracefully translated by
the exceptional Sam Garrett, most recently the translator of Herman
Koch's bestselling The Dinner.
|Country of origin:
David van Reybrouck
||235 x 163 x 45mm (L x W x T)
||Hardcover - Sewn / Cloth over boards
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