African Laughter: Four Visits to Zimbabwe by Doris May Lessing

By Doris May Lessing

The British writer writes approximately her homeland--from which she used to be exiled by means of the previous all-white government--discussing political corruption, AIDS, communal residing, and lots more and plenty extra. by way of the writer of The 5th Child. 35,000 first printing. $35,000 ad/promo. travel.

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If it is asked, How did these people, no more or less intelligent than ourselves, manage to accommodate so many incompatibles in their minds at the same time, then this belongs to a wider query: How and why do we all do it, often not noticing what we do? ’ This admission clearly belonged in a different part of the brain from that where dwelled the complacencies of Empire. By 1900 there was Southern Rhodesia, bright pink all over, inside its neat boundaries, with Mozambique, or Portuguese East Africa on one side, Angola (Portuguese West Africa) and the Bechuanaland Protectorate (pink) on the other, and Northern Rhodesia (pink) just above it.

That I had been Prohibited in Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland, countries where I had never been, did not affect me, but I could not ‘take in’ the fact that I could be Prohibited in the country I had been brought up in. ’ In this way was I finally informed that I was a Prohibited Immigrant. * As the convention was, I was proud to be Prohibited. Since then it has become clear that countries with the levels of purity of motive high enough to match our idea of ourselves as world citizens are not many.

I could not see a building or road or even a path, only bush. He got out and went off, leaving his women to follow. They could not manage the door handle, and wrenched at it, irritated and angry, meaning these emotions to show. I opened the door for them. They got out and followed their man. Husband? Father? He wore long khaki trousers and a good thick jersey. They wore short colourful dresses and cardigans. Even thirty years ago, in country districts, this group could easily have been a man with an animal skin over his shoulders–monkey, leopard, or buck–and a loincloth, and he would be carrying a bunch of spears.

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