Africa by Richard Dowden

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After a lifetime’s close observation of the continent, one of the world’s finest Africa correspondents has penned a landmark book on life and death in modern Africa. It takes a guide as observant, experienced, and patient as Richard Dowden to reveal its truths. Dowden combines a novelist’s gift for atmosphere with the scholar’s grasp of historical change as he spins tales of cults and commerce in Senegal and traditional spirituality in Sierra Leone; analyzes the impact of oil and the internet on Nigeria and aid on Sudan; and examines what has gone so badly wrong in Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Burundi, and the Congo. Dowden’s master work is an attempt to explain why Africa is the way it is, and enables its readers to see and understand this miraculous continent as a place of inspiration and tremendous humanity.

About Richard Dowden

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Richard Dowden is director of the Royal African Society. He spent a decade as Africa Editor of the Independent, and then another decade as Africa Editor of the Economist. He has made three television documentaries on Africa, for the BBC and Channel 4.
Published December 16, 2008 by PublicAffairs. 594 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Africa

The New York Times

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A veteran British journalist argues that the continent is more promising than the news media or aid workers often acknowledge.

May 03 2009 | Read Full Review of Africa

The Guardian

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People shouldn't write books about Africa.

Oct 31 2008 | Read Full Review of Africa


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Africa's history, present state of being and future is the subject of a new book, Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles. African journalist and author Richard Dowden discusses his book, which focuses on sub-Saharan Africa. He also weighs in on the political climate in African nations, such as...

Mar 19 2009 | Read Full Review of Africa

The Independent

"Where the West sees Africa as the place to make poverty history," Dowden comments, "the Chinese see it as the place to make money."

Sep 19 2008 | Read Full Review of Africa

The Telegraph

Richard Dowden was a foreign correspondent in Africa but his new book completely breaks this stereotype.

Oct 24 2008 | Read Full Review of Africa

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