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Black Star Paperback – June 30, 2007

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 236 pages
  • Publisher: BOYE6 (June 30, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847010105
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847010100
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,946,946 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


None of the biographies and other writings on Nkrumah are as eloquent, detailed and critical yet balanced as Basil Davidson's Black Star. (It) is indeed one of the most insightful assessments of the life and political role of a visionary who was far ahead of his time. (...) In this reader-friendly, thought-provoking book, Davidson deals very comprehensively with the life of a truly African revolutionary. (It) will no doubt remain a veritable goldmine of useful information for anyone interested in the life and times of this great African son of the twentieth century. --African Historical Review

About the Author

Basil Davidson is author of numerous publications on Africa, among them Black Man's Burden, The Search for Africa. The African Slave Trade, African Genius and The Lost Cities of Africa

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is a brilliant recounting of the man Kwame Nkrumah and the journey he and other Ghanaians took to lead their country (formerly the Gold Coast) to independence in 1957. One part the biography of Nkrumah and another part the story of modern Ghana up to the early 1970s, we see from Davidson's presentation that the fates of both are tied together. We are given unique insights on the painful compromises made with the British to smooth the pathway to independence, the heady optimism that greeted Ghana's independence in 1957, and the downfall of Nkrumah just nine years later amidst growing corruption, autocratic tendencies, and a collapse in the global price of cocoa.

Davidson was a friend of Nkrumah, and while he makes a few references to their friendship, he manages to present an objective, if positive portrayal of Nkrumah as a protagonist. That does not keep him from criticizing the political and economic choices Nkrumah made (or felt he had to make), especially in the period from 1951 to 1957 when he managed to win a modified self-governance for the Gold Coast. Among the most valuable contributions this book makes is that the notion of independence for the African colonies in the aftermath of World War II was not a given - the French and Portuguese would stubbornly hold on to their colonies to the bitter end - and many in Britain and what became Ghana would also have reservations about the pursuit of independence. That Nkrumah won it without the sort of prolonged conflict that engulfed other colonies was testimony to his vision and relentless focus on independence, regardless of the many distractions and obstacles in his path.

But was the cost of this too high, in economic and political terms?
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