Monday, August 17, 2009

Martin Meredith's 10 books to read on Africa

Martin Meredith is a journalist, biographer, and historian who has written extensively on Africa and its recent history. His books include Mugabe and The Fate of Africa (UK title: The State of Africa).

Brian Schofield calls the latter "an epic survey of a continent gone wrong, starting from colonial independence after World War 2, to the present day. I cannot recommend it too highly - to be part of humanity in 2009, you have to try to understand Africa, and this book offers a tremendous guide to the whole tragic saga."

One book from Meredith's list of ten books to read on Africa:
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

While working as a river-boat captain, Conrad witnessed the madness of greed and corruption that overtook King Leopold's Congo Free State at the end of the nineteenth century, immortalising it in a short novel that remains one of the most scathing indictments of imperialism ever written. "The horror! The horror," whispers his chief character Mr. Kurtz on his death bed, memorable words replayed in Francis Ford Coppola's film 'Apocalypse Now.'
Read about all ten books on Martin Meredith's list.

Heart of Darkness also appears on Tim Butcher's list of the top 10 books about Congo, Thomas Perry's best books list, and is #9 on the 100 best last lines from novels list.

--Marshal Zeringue