CENTRAL AFRICA: The New World of Tomorrow (World Neighbors) by Glenn Kittler

CENTRAL AFRICA: The New World of Tomorrow (World Neighbors)

Email this review


The third edition of a European's-eye-view, well received when first published in 1959 as Equatorial Africa, now updated and slightly changed from the 1964 edition to conform with the emerging sophistication of Western readers. Added here are an appreciative sketch of ""The African Sense of Values"" and a list of ""appealing"" African proverbs; gone are outdated complaints of communist antagonism to the missions. The chapter title, ""Paganism: Spiritual Chains of the Past,"" is now ""The World of Spirit, Old and New;"" within the chapter, ""pagans"" have become ""animists"" and ""ignorance"" is now ""lack of knowledge."" Otherwise the chapter on African religion is unchanged, and African ""superstitions"" are still considered a ""serious roadblock"" to the progress so valiantly undertaken by the missionaries (who remain the heroes of Africa's story). The history of Africa is still seen as the history of the White Man in Africa, be he slavetrader, explorer, corporate imperialist, missionary, or Peace Corpsman. Until the state-by-state synopses of recent politics in the last chapters, the only individual Africans named are a doctor educated by the missionaries and a Malawi teenager who was ""so determined for an American college education that he walked 2000 miles in two years in search of it."" In contrast, seven American Peace Corps volunteers are named and lauded (and the Peace Corps cited as an instrument of ""world-changing"" importance""). Kaula's individual Land and People volumes (comparable in age and coverage) have a similar European perspective, and Kittler's encyclopedic rundown of recent history (through 1969) will be handy, but sections in Murphy's (less conveniently organized) Understanding Africa (1969) offer a more African-oriented treatment of the region.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1971
Publisher: Nelson