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Out Of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa Paperback – September 22, 2009
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From 1991 to 1994, Keith Richburg was based in Nairobi as the Africa bureau chief for the Washington Post. He traveled throughout Africa, from Rwanda to Zaire, witnessing and reporting on wars, famines, mass murders, and the complexity and corruption of African politics. Unlike many black Americans who romanticize Africa, Richburg looks back on his time there and concludes that he is simply an American, not an African American. This is a powerful, hard-hitting book, filled with anguished soul-searching as Richburg makes his way toward that uncomfortable conclusion. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
To his credit, Mr. Richburg lays out his own confusion and guilt about saying some of the things he does . . . he is candid about his gratitude that his ancestors made it to America. Mr. Richburg lambastes whites in the West who, for fear of appearing racist, hesitate to place responsibility for Africa's woes on African shoulders, and then he extends this criticism to white Americans who are allegedly afraid to hold black Americans responsible for their own woes. -- The New York Times Book Review, William Finnegan --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
The main weak spot for me was the narrow view of African life he had, just going from one story to the next. He really didn't get to know the natives that well. Typical expatriate. He didn't spend much time where things were peaceful, for example. And, at the end of his book, his tedious exploration of the nagging question, why do Africans just seem to not do well at this thing called modern civilization, was basically college level silliness.
I recommend this book. Good read, informative about certain aspects of modern African history and culture, good insight into the life of one boy growing up in Detroit, and a good warning to do-gooders wanting to do good in Africa.
He had no illusions whatever about where his place--America, not Africa--was in the world. But tragically he and Mr. Richburg, Thomas Sowell, Waller Williams and numerous others will never break through the wall erected by the white establishment media to silence the voices of truth expressed by Americans of all races.