The Shadow of the Sun by Ryszard Kapuscinski

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In 1957, Ryszard Kapuscinski arrived in Africa to witness the beginning of the end of colonial rule as the first African correspondent of Poland's state newspaper. From the early days of independence in Ghana to the ongoing ethnic genocide in Rwanda, Kapuscinski has crisscrossed vast distances pursuing the swift, and often violent, events that followed liberation. Kapuscinski hitchhikes with caravans, wanders the Sahara with nomads, and lives in the poverty-stricken slums of Nigeria. He wrestles a king cobra to the death and suffers through a bout of malaria. What emerges is an extraordinary depiction of Africa--not as a group of nations or geographic locations--but as a vibrant and frequently joyous montage of peoples, cultures, and encounters. Kapuscinski's trenchant observations, wry analysis and overwhelming humanity paint a remarkable portrait of the continent and its people. His unorthodox approach and profound respect for the people he meets challenge conventional understandings of the modern problems faced by Africa at the dawn of the twenty-first century.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About Ryszard Kapuscinski

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Born in Pinsk (in what is now Belarus), the celebrated Polish foreign correspondent Ryszard Kapuscinski is the author of, among other titles, Shah of Shahs, Imperium, Shadow of the Sun, The Other and the memoir Travels with Herodotus. His books have been translated into twenty-eight languages. He died in 2007.
Published July 5, 2001 by Vintage. 325 pages
Genres: History, Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference, Travel, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Non-fiction

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We learn about an African conception of time: “Time appears as a result of our actions, and vanishes when we neglect or ignore it.” We learn that wildlife includes not only elephants and lions (it is only the old, slow ones that will deign to eat humans) but also the myriads of plants and insects...

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The Guardian

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His life spent chasing events and information in dangerous places - he has covered 27 coups and revolutions in nearly as many countries - is the experience which provides his authority as a writer of books, or rather, it is why, or partly why, his readers in English accept the authority in his wr...

Jun 03 2001 | Read Full Review of The Shadow of the Sun

The Guardian

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Summing up his dealings with a man serving as his driver, Kapuscinski eventually achieves the human - rather than strictly economic - relation he craves, one rich in "tenderness, warmth and goodwill".

Jun 02 2001 | Read Full Review of The Shadow of the Sun

Publishers Weekly

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Kapuscinski's seemingly effortless writing style makes daily life come alive—whether he's covering an Arab vendor making coffee or the efforts made at night by lizards to catch their mosquito prey.

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Austin Chronicle

For those of us inclined to complain about the blight of American-style capitalism on other cultures, Ryszard Kapuscinski's latest book is a reminder that we're not the first bullies in world history.

Jul 20 2001 | Read Full Review of The Shadow of the Sun

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