Book Notes


BILL FREUND, The Making of Contemporary Africa: the development of African Society since 1800, second edition. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1998, 352 pp., 45.00 [pounds sterling], ISBN 0 333 69871 1 hard covers; 14.99 [pounds sterling], ISBN 0 333 69872 X paperback.

This new edition of a familiar volume includes a rewritten chapter on southern Africa and a new chapter (`The age of structural adjustment'). The author is unrepentant in his materialism.

Lusotropicalisme: ideologies coloniales et identites nationales dans les mondes lusophones. CEAN Lusotopie 1997, Paris: Karthala, 1997, 580 pp., 180 francs, ISBN 2 86537 784 9.

An annual publication devoted to the lusophone world. The bulk of this one is devoted to Brazil and to an analysis of the writings of Gilberto Freyre, the theorist (if that is the right word) of lusotropicalism. There are quite interesting pieces on Angola and the Silo Tome massacre of 1953. The book, it must be said, is a tribute to the energy of its editors and an absolute must for anyone interested in the Portuguese-speaking world.

THEO D'HAEN (ed.), (Un)Writing Empire: readings in the post-colonial literatures in English, Cross-cultures 30, Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1998, 321 pp., 14.00 [pounds sterling], ISBN 90 420 0461 4.

Another contribution to the burgeoning field of imperialism and literary culture. This one is prefaced with an essay by Robert Young the burden of which seems to be that the left should stay away from nationalism. The bulk of the papers are on Asia, America and the Caribbean, but the four on Africa deal with Gardiner, Gide, Soyinka and francophone Maghreb writing.

AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK, African Development Report 1998. Africa in the world economy: human capital development in Africa.

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