Native Stranger

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Native Stranger

Excerpt

Quoted in the Wonders of the African World PBS Special


Reviews

From Publishers Weekly
A "Blackamerican," as he calls himself, Harris ( Mississippi Solo ) spent a year traveling throughout Africa. His magnificent book is a search for roots, an adventurous travelogue, a cry from the heart, a political dissection of oppressive regimes and a lyrical love song to a continent. It will almost certainly stir controversy and debate. Seeking a motherland, the author was shocked by the fatalism, racism, passivity and tribal backwardness he found among native blacks. White colonial overlords have been replaced, he writes, by one-party military regimes led by "a brotherhood of thugs guarding their positions and powers." Heartbreakingly beautiful scenes alternate with horrifying depictions of poverty, disease, pervasive corruption and empty, wasted lives. In his mastery of language, glinting irony, poetic prose and uncanny powers of observation, Harris is the equal of Paul Theroux and Bruce Chatwin. Book of the Month Club and Quality Paperback Book Club alternates.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
Harris describes the face and heart of Africa in what is much more than an extraordinarily well-written travelogue. He takes seriously his idea: "To go where they go, to eat what they eat, to walk this mile in their shoes; these are the things a traveler must do." Harris squats with nomads on the border of Senegal, rides like a Berber horseman in the Arab North, and joins a British party seeking gorillas in Zaire. He is a vividly descriptive and sympathetic observer, and his first-person account provides insights into sensitive African American questions. Although he starts his journey looking for a sense of belonging, Harris discovers that he is very much the product of American culture, education, and opportunity. Both an exploration of the African continent and a geography of the black American soul, this book is highly recommended for most libraries. Book of the Month Club and Quality Paperback Book Club alternates.
- Susan Fifer Canby, National Geographic Soc. Lib., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
 

Editions

bulletNative Stranger: A Black American's Journey into the Heart of Africa, Hardcover, Simon & Schuster, Feb. 15, 1992, ISBN 0671748971
bulletNative Stranger: A Black American's Journey into the Heart of Africa, Hardcover, Viking, UK edition, 1993
bulletNative Stranger: A Black American's Journey into the Heart of Africa, Paperback, Vintage, Feb. 2, 1993, ISBN 0679742328

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