By Emily Hahn
A lady who lived lifestyles on her personal phrases, Hahn was once an unknown and suffering author whilst Congo Solo used to be released. the following - restored to the shape she had meant - is Hahn's unforgettable narrative, a vibrant, provocative, and now and then irritating first-hand account of the racism, brutality, sexism, and exploitation that have been lifestyle realities below Belgium's iron-fisted colonial rule. previously, the few copies of Congo Solo in stream have been the adulterated model, which the writer altered after strain from her writer and threats of litigation from the most character's family members. This version makes on hand a misplaced treasure of women's commute writing that shocks and impresses, whereas laying off precious mild at the gender and race politics of the interval.
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Additional info for Congo Solo. Misadventures Two Degrees North
The Congo remained largely undeveloped in the early 1930s and still faced daunting problems for which there were no solutions, even if there had been the will to look for answers. 5 million inhabitants belonged to more than two hundred tribes and spoke a bewildering polyglot of languages – at least thirty-eight, by one count. All of this underscored the reality that national boundaries were a European concept, one utterly foreign to Africa’s tribal societies. There were just seventeen thousand whites in the Belgian Congo at the time; nevertheless, colonial officials continued to maintain tight control over all aspects of life.
Hahn and Boxer were living there in October 1948 when they had a second child, another daughter whom they named Amanda. Despite this, Hahn concluded she was not cut out for an “ordinary” life of domestic tranquility, so in 1950 she returned to New York and a job as a staff writer at The New Yorker. Hahn and Boxer remained husband and wife, even when they settled into separate lives. Thereafter, Hahn divided her time between two continents. The Hahn-Boxer marriage, long-distance and unorthodox though it was, endured for more than a half century, until Hahn’s death in 1997.
Hahn reminds us of the roots of this turmoil and suffering, the end of which is nowhere in sight even today. The Congo, so quintessentially African, is a land rich in natural resources. This has been both a blessing and its curse. The developed world’s insatiable hunger for gold, diamonds, and now for a precious mineral known as coltan – the source of tantalum, a vital element in the electronic circuitry of cell phones and similar devices – has sent commodity prices soaring. This trend can only continue at a time when the emerging economies of China, India, and other developing nations with voracious appetites for raw materials drive the markets.
Congo Solo. Misadventures Two Degrees North by Emily Hahn