In Dark Star Safari the wittily observant and endearingly irascible Paul Theroux takes readers the length of Africa by rattletrap bus, dugout canoe, cattle truck, armed convoy, ferry, and train In the course of his epic and enlightening journey, he endures danger, delay, and dismaying circumstances.Gauging the state of affairs, he talks to Africans, aid workers, missionarIn Dark Star Safari the wittily observant and endearingly irascible Paul Theroux takes readers the length of Africa by rattletrap bus, dugout canoe, cattle truck, armed convoy, ferry, and train In the course of his epic and enlightening journey, he endures danger, delay, and dismaying circumstances.Gauging the state of affairs, he talks to Africans, aid workers, missionaries, and tourists What results is an insightful mediation on the history, politics, and beauty of Africa and its people.In a new postscript, Theroux recounts the dramatic events of a return to Africa to visit Zimbabwe.
Dark Star Safari Overland from Cairo to Cape Town In Dark Star Safari the wittily observant and endearingly irascible Paul Theroux takes readers the length of Africa by rattletrap bus dugout canoe cattle truck armed convoy ferry and train In the
Planes, trains and automobiles and a ferry rickety, smelly mini buses a dugout canoe, taxis and a cattle truck.I give mad props to Theroux for humping it from Cairo to Cape Town at the age of 59, but this type of transport he only used a plane once to fly into Khartoum would scare away the discerning traveler me This makes me even grateful for Theroux s firsthand account of Africa.Foreshadowing book spoiler He quotes and draws comparisons from Joseph Conrad s Heart of Darkness A lot I like to [...]
WHY do I keep reading books by this man For some unknown reason I assume that I ll garner some great knowledge form his books or be amused than frustrated Thus far not Instead I m annoyed by his arrogance and his assumption that he s different from other white people in Africa because he knows that the aide system is faulty or because he lived there in the 60 s Just because you have a backpack and a history with Africa doesn t make you an expert, and Theroux whining about the fact that Africa h [...]
Grrrrr Oh how this man irritates yet enthrals me I have just tramped down through Africa in the footsteps of Theroux, sighing and tsking, yet unable to put the book down This man is a genius writer, yet so darn cantankerous, curmudgeonly and scathing that he made me want to throw the book on the floor and mash it Even when he relishes a place, it often seems that it is the dirt, the stink and the squalor that inspires him It s a kind of machismo Proof that he isn t a tourist, but a bona fide exp [...]
This was my first Theroux and, on finishing it, I couldn t fully judge of the tone of a book that was written near what will likely be the end of his career, after a certain cynicism has taken root Since then, I ve read The Great Railway Bazaar his first travel book and now a good chunk of Ghost Train.First, it has to be said that this book is very NOT P.C to say the least Theroux has what often appears to be an open and unapologetic contempt for many of the black Africans he meets and describes [...]
This book was a great read for a student of international development relations I understand the author s cynicism, admire his risktaking, and appreciate his insight into the impact of decades of foreign intervention in Africa I didn t feel he was overly arrogant for a journey of this depth and magnitude it certainly added to the story, for better or worse It was an enjoyable read, full of analysis, rather than simply description.
Theroux is a pompous ass A just compelling enough pompous ass.
For me this is the best Paul Theroux that I have read.It was better in my opinion that his other travel non fiction The Great Railway Bazaar By Train Through Asia, The Old Patagonian Express, Riding the Iron Rooster By Train Through China , and I think there are a couple of reasons.Firstly, in Dark Star Safari the travel was not all by train This meant there was to write about In his other books which I also enjoyed don t get me wrong , there is only so much he can describe about the train itse [...]
A trek through the heart of Modern Africa16 May 2015 Well, I have already written three blogposts worth of thoughts on this really interesting book, however I will simply touch on a few important points for those of you who don t have the time or the inclination to read through what I have written elsewhere and the links to those posts are below Anyway, this is the diary of a journey that the author took from Cairo, across the African continent, to Cape Town His original intention was to travel [...]
Safari, in Swahili means journey, and is Theroux s reason for returning to Africa to escape a life usurped by schedules, appointments, e mails and cell phones After 40 years, Paul Theroux returns to Africa where he began writing At 60, no one has so conquered the genre like Theroux But this return to Africa is rumination than entertainment, and it is depressing His first years in Africa as Peace Corps volunteer and University teacher saw a continent full of hope and promise Today, the dark star [...]
A reasonably well written and interesting book about Africa There are very interesting bits about places rarely visited by Westerners such as Sudan that are surprising and vividly narrated by the author Quite heartbreaking is the terrible condition in which many countries in Africa still find themselves in, and the author s cynicism is very understandable, considering the history and the realities which Africa must face His insight into the impact of decades of foreign intervention in Africa inc [...]
Near the end of Paul Theroux s north south journey across the African continent, from Cairo to Cape Town, he allows himself the luxury of a swanky South African train trip, a rare mode of transportation for this usually spartan traveler in this fascinating trek on board cattle trucks, minivans packed to the roof with Africans, rickety matutus, canoes and proper boats During a train stop a child begs in a prayerful way Theroux, from the train, can t bring himself to toss food to her After the tra [...]
Mayn This flipping book was an endlessly patronizing, infinitely tedious rant from a burdened white man Perhaps the most annoying travel book I read Gah Take 54 seats Paul Theroux I d recommend Dark Continent My Black Arse if you re looking for a Cape to Cairo travelogue Infinitely better.Edit Thisarticle This article right here is The Truth While the review is about The Last Train to Zona Verde My Ultimate African Safari, it might as well have been reviewing this book Excerpts As Theroux watche [...]
Funny I had a Paul Theroux on my shelf for years, untouched, and finally decided to take it with me to the Chicago Book Festival last summer where I released it Theroux was speaking so I thought it would be cool to release one of his books just outside the tent where he was speaking I left the book next to one of the tent stakes and went inside to hear him talk He was a fabulous storyteller and I immediately regretted that I had given away his book I went out to try to retrieve the book, but it [...]
3.5 5 Pessimistic Globetrotter wins d Nobel On reading this headline during this trip, Theroux s hopes went up that maybe he had hit d jackpot He did not, Naipaul did The word pessimistic is a little too harsh on Theroux but he is blunt, has a caustic wit at times, but like Naipaul he is observant and has empathy and hence is readable.The dust, antiquity and fundamentalism of Egypt, the complete anarchy and poverty in war struck Sudan, Kenya, the utter despair of Malawi, Mozambique and the games [...]
What an arrogant, hypocritical dick One picks up this book hoping for an armchair traveling voyage through East Africa What one gets is a self righteous White Man who describes himself as grizzled and wise at the ripe age of 70 something, pointing out numerous times that many Africans guess he s in his 40s because they are so unused to seeing old men He paints himself as impervious to the dangers of Africa because he s Been There Before, and can speak to natives in their own language He sneers a [...]
I like to experience travel with a little grit and Paul Theroux certainly is of like mind While traveling from Cairo to Cape Town, crossing the African continent from north to south, he suffers discomfort, uncertainty, hostility, and life threatening situations There is no public transportation through many of the countries he traversed He hitched rides in rickety overloaded trucks and buses traveling on roads strewn with potholes and boulders He freely expresses his disdain for aid organization [...]
Curmudgeonly cogitator creeps curiously from Cairo to Cape Town Crazy old coot Travel writer several months of free time Egypt Sudan Ethiopia Kenya Uganda Tanzania Malawi Mozambique Zimbabwe South Africa Mozambique South AfricaRearrange the letters in Paul Theroux and you get Heat Up, Luxor I feel it s my duty to point these things out Make of them what you will.
In Dark Star Safari, Paul Theroux travels from Cairo to Capetown over land His journey takes him through Egypt, the Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and South Africa As much as Hans Rosling of TED fame urges his audience to see these countries as unique, I suspect that for many readers these countries are all just parts of a hazy mental map titled Somewhere in Africa On the legend might be the following notes Blood Diamond was a good movie set in Africa.Nelson Mandel [...]
Paul Theroux does not admire foreign aid workers or the work they do The first 200 pages of Dark Star Safari contain several accounts of rude, obnoxious, self important aid workers, often depicted as roaring through blighted communities in expensive Land Rovers, refusing to give rides Two aid workers tell him they are on their way to supervise a wet feeding, an outreach effort that Theroux characterizes as going to a village to dump corn soy blend in a trough for people to eat He gets into it wi [...]
Renowned travel writer, Paul Theroux s, account of a solitary journey from Cairo to Cape Town in 2001 If you do not appreciate nostalgic, and often quite opinionated ramblings, then give the book a skip You may enjoy a glossy safari lodge brochure better I enjoyed his narrative because of its individualistic tone and Theroux s often contentious rantings against foreign aid workers and African governments inability to put their people first.His nostalgia is quite evident when he writes about Mala [...]
I got this mainly because 1 Paul Theroux is Louis Theroux s father and I like Louis Theroux.2 It was a Kindle bargain.And No.3 maybe ought to have mentioned this first I have a bit of a fascination with that vast continent that can be glimpsed from my terrace.Bearing in mind this is a good 10 years out of date I thought it was nevertheless a good way of seeing the real Africa as PT tends to go off the beaten track and retains a dry scorn for the touristy type tours which in his opinion miss out [...]
Well either the entire continent is headed to hell in a hand basket, or Paul Theroux is one of the bigger pessimists I know His theme seems to be in part that Europeans kept the place up and when it was handed over to those of African lineage corruption and incompetence took over He heaps great blame on the NGO programs in Sub Saharan countries essentially articulating that they have removed from citizens of many Africans nations any incentive to fend for themselves He also has no respect for em [...]
BBC7 Monday 17thWilliam Roberts reads Paul Theroux s book on Africabbc iplayer episode 2.5 upped to 3 just beause I am having THAT Friday feeling.
Enjoyed it as much as the first time through I would love to be the traveler Theroux is.
Although Paul Theroux s The Great Railway Bazaar is one of my all time favorite books, I stopped reading him when he fell into what seemed to me to be an interminable bad mood somewhat ironically, along about Happy Isles of Oceania, I think, in 1993, so it s been quite a while since I picked up a Theroux travel narrative But a friend recommended his Dark Star Safari Houghton, 2004 , and, ever trusting and, as always, looking for a good book to read , I tried it, and was immediately hooked It beg [...]
Theroux embarca no desafio pessoal de viajar do Cairo Cidade do Cabo por via terrestre, n o tanto por vontade de visitar os lugares tur sticos que vai encontrando pelo caminho, mas sobretudo pelo desejo de se isolar do burburinho do mundo civilizado ocidental Embora tenha conseguido atingir o seu objectivo obviamente , a sua jornada n o f cil, tanto a n vel f sico como emocional A burocracia para obten o de vistos imprevis vel, cruzar fronteiras terrestres um pesadelo mas quem quer visitar a fri [...]
Paul Theroux is aggravating at times He is holier than thou, than I and than all the rest of us, so there is no other expat worthy of being in the developing world except for someone like him This is the flaw in some of his books But what is enjoyable about this book is how much he enjoys the adventure and the simple act of getting from one place to another in places where doing that is never easy or comfortable, and he chooses the uncomfortable routes and modes of travel.I read this as I travel [...]
His writing about Egypt and Sudan, including the cultural and historical reflections, I found fascinating I found the section on Ethiopia useful, if a bit superficial Theroux really hits his stride, though, when he gets into Kenya and Malawi, where he is able to draw comparisons between the places and peoples he knew from living and teaching there back in the 1960s and those of current day Africa His mounting critique of foreign aid and associated NGOs as he travels south is indispensable At fir [...]
A great book which is entertaining, informative, and thoughtful My travel book reading has been limited to Rick Steeves and Bill Bryson Paul Theroux is a refreshing step toward the serious end of the spectrum, while still relying on a healthy dose of humor.Theroux present himself as an intrepid traveler who is willing to brave any hardship for a story Once he gets through Ethiopia, though, of his personal story is revealed and I found the trip through eastern Africa to be much remarkable becau [...]
Legendary travel writer Paul Theroux hit a home run with this book, published about ten years ago His adventures in east Africa, traveling mostly in rickety, dangerous vehicles and meeting native peoples from Egypt and Sudan to Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and down into Malawi, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe, will keep you spell bound I found Theroux s discussions about the impact of western aid programs and of fundamentalist Christian evangelizing in Africa to be both accurate and thoughtful His main the [...]