The Betrayal of Africa

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This fascinating look at Africa refutes the common assumption that the Western world is the solution to the challenges the continent faces. An excellent introduction to the subject for young adults.

In the wealthy West, it's assumed that Africa is the problem and we are the solution. This timely book argues the opposite. Though couched in benevolent terms, Western policies in fact have for decades helped fuel the continent's devastating decline. Every year, far more of Africa's riches flow out to the rich world than we plough into Africa. In this systematic process of exploitation, explains author Gerald Caplan, first-world leaders work in happy harmony with African despots to wreak havoc on their nations and peoples. The Betrayal of Africa explains its historical background, the contemporary situation, and how a conflation of elements — China's bold new presence in Africa, an active and angry civil society demanding government reform, and fresh leadership — is creating the possibility for positive change. Using simple, lucid language, the book helps Western readers understand what they can do to remedy a complex, increasingly dire situation that affects us all.