Congo: The Epic History of a People
by: David Van Reybrouck
The Democratic Republic of Congo currently ranks among the world’s most failed nation-states. Congo: The Epic History of a People traces the history of this devastated nation from the beginnings of the slave trade through colonization, to the struggle for independence and Mobutu’s brutal three decades of rule. David Van Reybrouck ends with the civil war that has raged from 1996 to the present day—the deadliest since World War II.
Van Reybrouck balances hundreds of interviews with a diverse range of Congolese with meticulous historical research to construct a multidimensional portrait of this nation and its people. He brings nineteenth-century Africa to life through little-known archival sources and examines the current conflict and its connection to the rare earth mining required to make cell phones.
Epic in scope yet eminently readable, both penetrating and deeply moving, Congo takes a deeply humane approach to political history, focusing squarely on the Congolese perspective, and returning a nation?s history to its people.