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Red Strangers (Penguin Twentieth Century Classics) Mass Market Paperback – 29 Jul 1999

4.8 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (29 July 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141182059
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141182056
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.1 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,024,224 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Elspeth Huxley (1907-1997) was the daughter of Major Josceline Grant of Njoro, Kenya where she spent most of her childhood. She was educated at the European School in Nairobi and at Reading University where she took a diploma in agriculture, and atCornell University. In 1929 she joined the Empire Marketing Board as a press officer and, following her marriage to Gervase Huxley in 1931, travelled widely with him in America, Africa and elsewhere. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is one of the most memorable books I read as a child growing up in colonial Kenya. The story portays how strange the first European settlers appeared to the indigenous African inhabitents, as imagined by one of the best writers of the colonial African experience. Probably seems very dated now, but the book conjures up scenes of African village life that must have been from the author's direct observation.
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Ricahrd Dawkins was instrumental in getting this reprinted ad I'm glad. I've never read a book by a white author who got so well inside Kikuyu culture and conveyed how weird the colonising Europeans were and how carelessly they destroyed what was there before. It doesn't romanticise the old Kikuyu ways, but it's very respectful and well researched.
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A fascinating account of the corrosive effect of one culture over powering another. You are left with a sense of loss at the destruction of a way of life - albeit an incredibly hard one- with an associated and fully interwoven world view is buried within a few generations as the juggernaut of Victorian values unwittingly crushes it. Very well written and characterised, the book makes for gripping read.
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Rarely have I read 'the other person's point of view' written with such clarity and understanding. It opened up a whole new way of thinking to me. Of course, 'culture clash' is still going on today in many areas of the world. For every gain, something is lost.
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Format: Paperback
A thought provoking novel that stimulates and then challenges our moral certainty about the wrongs of imperialism. Huxley's narrative skillfully and convincingly draws us into the story of three generations of a Kikuyu family. A mere rumour at first, as the novel progresses, Europeans, personally and culturally, became increasingly a feature of African life. Readers naturally lament this outcome and its related developments: urbanisation, changes in agriculture and landownership, and the passing of native customs, both ceremonial and practical. Some might also have strong feelings about the Christian missionaries. But the novel's handling of female genital mutilation gives pause for thought, as does African enthusiasm for formal education. In a like manner, the depiction of native nationalism helps explain, in part, its lack of success until the 1950s (well over a decade after Red Strangers was published).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A fascinating insight into the coming of the 'white' man - red strangers - into East Africa as seen from the African point of view. Should be compulsory reading for anyone before they pontificate on Colonialism or Imperialism.
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