This polemic longread takes a critical look at the differences in the discourse about Africa and about Europe. Comparing Africa and Europe 130 years ago and today, the book contains a passionate plea for greater respect for the different African cultures and languages and contends that a lack of such respect is one of the main factors impeding Africa's development today.

The book offers first-hand testimony to social, political, literary, educational, and internationalist aspects of the World War I-era “New Negro” movement and to Harrison’s role in its development. The need for new interest in the life and work of Harrison is even more pronounced today among the many people challenging injustice and seeking a better world.

This is the year of ‘A Man of the People. 2016 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Chinua Achebe’s fourth novel, the gripping satire.

The new book is a genuine and significant contribution to the understanding of one of the worst tragedies of this century, an indispensable resource for anyone who wants to know what the human costs of regional poverty and underdevelopment are today, and a much-needed voice for the actual victims of the tragedy.


I met Professor Sam Moyo at a seminar in the 1980s after he joined the University of Zimbabwe where I was then teaching, and was immediately struck by his quiet brilliance.