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Why Africa is Poor: And What Africans Can Do About It? Paperback – 26 Jan 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; 2nd edition edition (26 Jan. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143528092
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143528098
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 12.7 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 269,624 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A complex and thought provoking message. The urgency of population growth and the slow pace of recognition by governments of the critical nature of possible future events, has resulted in my having little optimism for the future,
The frustration of uneducated youth ,who will account for the majority of the population will result in an upheaval,
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Brilliant read, haven't finished it yet but so far it's been an interesting read just what I expected and can't wait to finish it
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very good book in my opinion about Africa's problems and the fact that the solutions to them are not rocket science...!!...I wish every African could read so as to read it...& I with every African leader today...& as we'll any prospective African leader for tomorrow would pick up & read this book...!!
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Excellent work.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa0a7c00c) out of 5 stars 5 reviews
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa083d564) out of 5 stars What Africans can do about it 11 Aug. 2012
By Julian Cook - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a substantial book (about 500 pages), but is written in a current affairs style and designed to be readable by anyone with a basic knowledge of economics. The point of the book is really in the subtitle 'and what Africans can do about it'. Greg Mills does not think that it is up to the developed world to solve Africas' problems. To state the obvious, this approach has not worked in the past and he spends a lot of time explaining why this will not work in the future either.
A large proportion of the book is not about Africa at all. He spends a large chunk of the first half of the book discussing various reasons (or excuses) given for the relative failure of African nations to grow and for each reason, he finds another nation elsewhere in the world that has had the opposite experience.
In the end, he points out that nations that showed spectacular economic growth e.g. Singapore, were led by leaders and governments who were obsessed by economic growth and staked their reputations on achieving it.
Even though there are many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, each with their own story, the central theme is lack of interest by governments on how to realistically achieve growth. One of the strengths of this book is that Greg Mills does not use words like 'probably', 'might' or 'could be the reason'. He basically points to this one issue as the central problem.
The only minor disappointment I had was the relative lack personal conversations with government officials themselves. There are several, but more would have helped illustrate the issues better. There is a good set of journeys/ examples that he uses to drive home comparisons. A good example is his description of the difference between leaving the Congo (barely a country) and entering Rwanda (quite well run):
"The Rwandan road was not perfect, but was an autobahn in comparison to the Congolese side. It was the difference apparently between having a government and a regime that preys on its people"
This really drove home the point in very few words, but more first-hand interviews would have helped illustrate some quite complex topics and made the (500 page) book more fascinating, I think.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa083d5e8) out of 5 stars Why is Africa the way it is? 25 Oct. 2013
By Mr. D. H. Lipschitz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
How can one analyse the problems in Africa without appearing to be Racist?

This is the mind blowing age old question. Dr Greg Mills of the Brenthurst Foundation has solved this problem in this book.

The book is a fascinating read and it compares countries and continents that have been occupied / invaded by foreigners and "imperialists" over the past hundred years and then compares them with African countries.

He looks at Asia and South America amongst others and compares their post nationalisation and post civil war growth and policies with those of Africa and his findings are startling.

This is one of those books that cannot be read quickly and where lots of thinking about what Dr Mills is saying is required. I am still on the first part of the book about why Africa is poor, but I recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand why Africa and Africans are in the state they are.

I'll write more once I am finished the book and once I have read what we can do about it. Note that having been born in Africa, I consider myself an African!
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa083d4d4) out of 5 stars make you think!!!!!!!! 15 April 2013
By Mopedi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Gives a quick of where Africa as a continent is at.

From the book I gathered it much better for the continent to rely on itself than aid
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa083dab0) out of 5 stars Compulsory reading if you are interested or involved in Africa 5 Aug. 2014
By retiefdv - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This should be compulsory reading for all African politicians and NGO's providing aid in Africa.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa083d5b8) out of 5 stars Five Stars 19 Nov. 2014
By joseph Domfeh-Boateng - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
VERY I TERESTING AND INSPIRING SOURCE OF INFORMATION. THANKS.
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