What is Africa really like today? For all the ordinary townsmen, villagers, and particularly mothers, breadwinners and children who live there? Cutting through the Western media‘s stereotype picture of a continent wracked only by civil conflict and AIDS, Torild Skard has written an engrossing introduction to a continent in change. Based on her extensive travels through the length and breadth of the region when she served as UNICEF‘s Director in West and Central Africa in the 1990s, this experienced writer combines eyewitness accounts, lively description and deeply informed insight to portray the human reality of Africa today. With honesty, cultural sensitivity and a commitment especially to women, she frankly describes the social, health and other problems experienced by its people, but also the sources of hope for the future represented by courageous individuals, innovative community-level projects and sensible programmes being implemented in the region by the international agency whose work she coordinated.
This highly readable account ranges over the social, economic and political realities of modern-day Africa, as well as introducing the reader to its history and complex cultures.
It is ideal for the general reader, Sixth Form students and particularly aid workers, agency staff and volunteers who are about to travel or work in the Continent.
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Torild Skard is a senior researcher in women’s studies at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs in Oslo and is a former member of parliament and the first woman president of the Norwegian Upper House, among many other appointments.Review:
"A richly detailed and wise account of the day-to-day reality of life in contemporary West and Central Africa." -- Carol Bellamy, Executive Director, UNICEF
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