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The Plundered Planet by Paul Collier

The Plundered Planet by Paul Collier

For a second time I happened to be near Hay-on-Wye in Wales when the Hay Festival was in full swing. For those who haven’t heard of this, it’s a book festival that runs for two weeks in the summer and has an exceptional line-up of speakers. While perusing the programme I came across a talk […]

Reading List – Books read during first 7 months

List of Books read during ‘Take On Africa’, in order read. (Those with an asterisk * are related to Africa and those in bold I enjoyed most and would highly recommend): Wide Sargasso Sea – Jean Rhys Lolita – Nabokov A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill Bryson Our Man in Havana – Graham […]

Reconciliation in Rwanda: Fifteen years on from the genocide

Reconciliation in Rwanda: Fifteen years on from the genocide

Rwandan Genocide on Film Today I watched ‘Shooting Dogs‘, a film depicting the tragic story of the Rwandan genocide from the L’Ecole Technique Officielle. There are similarities between this and another film, ‘Hotel Rwanda‘, which also depicts the same tragic story of the Rwandan genocide only set in a hotel compound rather than a school.  […]

Travelling without books doesn't mean nothing to read

Travelling without books doesn’t mean nothing to read

I’ve recently started reading again. This happens periodically. I won’t read a single book for months and then something will spark my interest and I’m off. All my spare time is spent reading. I confine myself to my room with a book and large mug of tea, emerging at regular intervals to refill the mug […]

Collier's Take on War, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places

Collier’s Take on War, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places

Browsing Times Online today, one article caught my eye, for two reasons: Firstly, it was about Africa – and anything involving Africa interests me these days, as the date for my departure from the UK and entry to this fascinating continent looms ever nearer. Secondly, it mentioned Paul Collier – the author of The Bottom […]

Seeing Beyond Stereotypes

Seeing Beyond Stereotypes

I read a satirical essay today titled ‘How To Write About Africa‘. I stumbled upon the article by Binyavanga Wainaina, which is published by Granta, having typed the word ‘Africa’ into Google. The article begins by saying that the title should always include either ‘Africa’, ‘Darkness’ or ‘Safari’. This is so very true. Now I […]