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How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

By: Walter Rodney,Angela Y. Davis - foreword
Narrated by: Mirron Willis
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Summary

The classic work of political, economic, and historical analysis, powerfully introduced by Angela Davis.

In his short life, the Guyanese intellectual Walter Rodney emerged as one of the leading thinkers and activists of the anticolonial revolution, leading movements in North America, South America, the African continent, and the Caribbean. In each locale, Rodney found himself a lightning rod for working class Black Power. His deportation catalyzed 20th-century Jamaica's most significant rebellion, the 1968 Rodney riots, and his scholarship trained a generation how to think politics at an international scale. In 1980, shortly after founding of the Working People's Alliance in Guyana, the 38-year-old Rodney would be assassinated.

In his magnum opus, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, Rodney incisively argues that grasping "the great divergence" between the West and the rest can only be explained as the exploitation of the latter by the former. This meticulously researched analysis of the abiding repercussions of European colonialism on the continent of Africa has not only informed decades of scholarship and activism, it remains an indispensable study for grasping global inequality today.

©1972 Walter Rodney; copyright 2018 by Patricia Rodney; Postscript copyright 1971, 2018 by A. M. Babu; Foreword copyright 2018 by Angela Y. Davis; Introduction copyright 1981, 2018 by Vincent Harding, William Strickland, and Robert Hill (P)2018 Tantor
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

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Essential Reading (Listening) by ALL Human Beings

I cannot praise this book and the narrator, Mr Mirron Willis, enough. An audio book which will have to be re-listened several times throughout my life due to the high volume of invaluable information which helps us all to understand ourselves, our heritage and the world.

Please do give the audiobook or the printed book as a gift to your family and friends. Knowledge is indeed freedom and the very least we can do is to help people not to die in ignorance of their circumstances.

Mr Willis brought to life written words with so much honesty and soulful eloquence in his speech. The perfectly tuned emphasis which helped me understand the importance of the information.

Certainly a lifelong favourite book and favourite narrator.

Time for reparations. Time to settle the scores.

13 people found this helpful

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Phenomenal!

True, raw, insightful, anger-provoking, challenging, revolutionary, memorable and extremely relevant - almost 50 years after it was written. This book and its associated works cost Walter Rodney his life - after, like all Afrikan leaders, he was murdered to prevent Afrikans from rising and challenging our oppression and subjugation. This book should be on every curriculum at all levels of education, if we truly are committed to making Black Lives Matter!!

9 people found this helpful

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Impactful

For those who want to build or even dream of a brighter future for Africa this is a must read, must study and must share.

6 people found this helpful

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Inspired by Marx

Good book about Africa and its suffering but it has the spirit of Marx writing and it’s clearly written during the Cold War and the writer seeing the future being communists

5 people found this helpful

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Great understanding

This book has given me a greater understanding of what and how the Europeans have put themselves in the position they are today and what we need to do to stop them taking advantage.

5 people found this helpful

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Africa must rise

very informative in understanding underdevelopment in Africa and how we need to look to the past to present to help us I'm the future

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Everyone needs to read this book!

We are all aware that Africa was underdeveloped by Europe in general terms. Walter Rodney makes it impossible to ignore or identify the specifics of that underdevelopment and the effects that continue to exists today. He uses empirical research data and statistics to prove the centuries of oppression and exploitation. Anyone who denies their European descended privilege should be able to recognise it after reading this book. Great men have always lived and Walter Rodney has been immortalised with this work that is as relevant today, if not more so, than it was when he wrote it ❤️ May he continue to rest peacefully.

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Brilliant book but narration is very off-putting

I was really disappointed by the narration which made listening difficult to maintain. The narration sounds very robotic which is off-putting!

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A must read for all who value freedom!

This book succinctly explains the actions that have led to the current geopolitical climate. Much of the challenges faced then seem to be in affect now. A great read for those seeking insight into what true liberation will look like based on where Africa has come from.

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absolutely amazing book

Re-read after 20 years and still as moving as ever. Required reading in all schools, but definitely throughout Africa and the Caribbean.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Joy
  • 16-04-19

A Superb must read for everyone

Loved this book. At times it was difficult to follow due to unfamiliarity with historical African states and tribes. but you will walk away with a thorough understanding of how Europe underdeveloped Africa both locally and abroad.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 25-08-19

It's a must for any self respecting black people

It goes through the history and reasons for black people's modern issues and African poverty. It also gives solutions.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Alednam A Uonopk
  • 17-08-20

Worth listening to thrice...

Walter Rodney put in the work. This book goes to great lengths to elucidate the amount of deception that has been heaped on the African people and the continent itself. The deeper one understands the history, the easier it is to see how the situation at hand came to be.

5 people found this helpful

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  • keckums
  • 30-07-20

Decolonize yourself

Well, I realized as I listened to this book that I am really ignorant about all things African. And the incredibly limited "knowledge" I did have was completely screwed by European capitalistic ideology. This book is a necessary read for self work in the time of the revolution.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Ekow Magnificent
  • 07-08-20

A must read for all who believe in humanity

l find the book very inspiring and a call to action. l highly recommend it to anyone who's interested in the development of Africa.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Laura
  • 27-04-20

Must read

If you want to claim that you know anything about the world, you need to read this.

4 people found this helpful

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  • ElzabetG
  • 09-03-22

Anachronistic

This book is dense and hard to read. I did learn many things about WHY the author wrote as he did. At the time of publication (1972), African nations were coming out of years of capitalist colonial exploitation and purposeful destabilization of their governments by the US and Europe, the devastation of which we are still seeing to this day fifty years after publication (2022). It is very important realize that Rodney was writing within this milieu. The USSR was still extant as a world power and the make-up was still fresh on the Soviet, North Korean, and Chinese economies. That being said, this book has aged poorly over the last 50 years because the facade on North Korea has cracked so revealingly, the the USSR has broken into it's component parts and is a capitalist oligarchy much like the United States, and China's socialism/communism is an capitalist force to be reckoned with.

The cognitive dissonance of having lived through the downfall of so many communist/socialist societies and the collapse of the US economy into an ogliarchy makes it hard to accept some of Rodney's premises. I can see his disdain for the capitalism that has definitely destroyed and continues to destroy the lives and livelihoods of so many millions of people in the pursuit of money and the power that money brings, but his admiration of the communist/socialist worldview seems naive at best in hindsight.

I wonder if Rodney's ideas would have changed had he not been assassinated and had lived through the last 50 years. His understanding of how economies influence polities would no doubt be very insightful. Not because I think he would have disavowed Marxist thought, but it would have gained a more nuanced view as time went on. As it stands this book is a good read for the history and explanation of the appeal of Marxist economy to BIPOC leaders at the time, but probably not much more.

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  • A. SAID
  • 22-10-20

Holy Book

This is the African Holy Book. A must read for anyone who wants to break the chain of oppression. Rest In Peace Orisha Walter Rodney.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Dave
  • 03-07-20

So educational!! Free Africa from this!

So many memorable moments. Absolutely have to listen to this one!! History that needs to be told!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Thomas Johnson
  • 13-06-20

Upon further review

I first read the book in college and couldn’t understand why this occurred I passed the class but still didn’t have a firm understanding until now. The author is pro communism referring to Marks and that capitalism let Africa down. The spin on communism as a way for Africa to move to developing countries. Since the book was written in 1972, you can judge for your how Africa develop following this book. I will use it for reference only

2 people found this helpful