Congo

Author(s): David Van Reybrouck

Popular History

Epic yet eminently readable, penetrating and profoundly moving, 'Congo' traces the fate of one of the world's most devastated countries, second only to war-torn Somalia: the Democratic Republic of Congo. With a span of several hundred years and an enormous cast of characters, 'Congo' chronicles the most dramatic episodes of the nation's history, the people and events that have determined Congo's development - from the slave trade to the ivory and rubber booms; from the arrival of Henry Morton Stanley and his meeting with Dr Livingstone to the brutal regime of Belgium's King Leopold II; from the struggle for independence to Mobutu's exploitative rule; and from Muhammad Ali and George Foreman's world famous 'Rumble in the Jungle' to the civil war over natural resources that began in 1996 and still rages today. David Van Reybrouck interweaves his own family's history with the voices of a diverse range of individuals - charismatic dictators, feuding warlords, child-soldiers, elderly, female smugglers, and many in the African diaspora of Europe and China - to offer a deeply humane approach to political history, focusing squarely on the Congolese perspective in an attempt to return a nation's history to its people.

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'The English-speaking world has been impatiently awaiting this translation. 'Congo' is a remarkable piece of work. Van Reybrouck pulls off the tricky feat of keeping a panoramic history of a vast and complex nation accessible, intimate and particular. He does this by talking to the Congolese, who know their history better than anyone else.' Michela Wrong, author of In the Footsteps of Mr. Kurtz 'A monumental history ... more exciting than any novel' NRC Handelsblad

David Van Reybrouck is an award-winning author, acclaimed playwright, reporter, and poet who studied in Leuven and Cambridge and holds a doctorate from Leiden University. He has travelled extensively throughout Africa and has been actively involved in organizing literary workshops for Congolese playwrights in Kinshasa and Goma. He lives in Brussels.

General Fields

  • : 9780007562916
  • : HarperCollins Publishers
  • : Fourth Estate Ltd
  • : 0.27
  • : February 2014
  • : 234mm X 153mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : April 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 656
  • : Apr-14
  • : Paperback
  • : David Van Reybrouck