by Tony D'Souza
$25.00 List Price
Tony D’Souza’s Whiteman, published in 2006, was widely praised for its treatment of, in Norman Rush’s words, “the paradoxes of Western aid-giving.” The book, D’Souza’s first, recounted the adventures and foibles of a white American man, Jack Diaz, in Ivory Coast during its recent civil war. His NGO’s money dries up, so Diaz doesn’t dig any of the wells he thought he would. Instead, he passes the days hunting the flapping francolin bird, tooling around on a mobylette, and, like so many before him, trying to show his “red stick” to Ivorian women. Self-critical musings like “All the things I had been doing suddenly seemed as ridiculous as they really were” are followed by frustration that “the forest, the people, they would never reveal themselves to me”—as if the forest were there to take off its leaves.
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