Africa is huge, internationally vital, potentially rich and powerful yet mired in failure - political, economic, social and even cultural. Yet the story of contemporary Africa is not just one of global tragedy but also of enormous hope for the future. This stimulating and unconventional book on Africa today and its relationship with the West explores the many complex reasons behind Africa's failure to fulfil its potential - it is a continent blighted by colonialism, exploitation and the interference of great powers in the international relations of the region - and offers some genuinely original and well-argued suggestions for ways forward. Critical and objective yet involved and sympathetic, "Grasping Africa" demonstrates Stephen Chan's deep understanding of the history and politics of Africa based on his long experience of the continent in often dangerous circumstances.
STEPHEN CHAN is Professor of International Relations and Dean of Law and Social Sciences at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He is the author of Robert Mugabe: A Life of Power and Violence and Out of Evil: New International Politics and Old Doctrines of War (both published by I.B.Tauris).