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american darling-babel (ne) n°780 de…
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american darling-babel (ne) n°780 (2004 original; edició 2013)

de Banks russell (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
7502822,793 (3.65)31
"The Darling is Hannah Musgrave's story, told emotionally and convincingly years later by Hannah herself. A political radical and member of the Weather Underground, Hannah has fled America to West Africa, where she and her Liberian husband become friends and colleagues of Charles Taylor, the notorious warlord and now ex-president of Liberia. When Taylor leaves for the Unites States in an effort to escape embezzlement charges, he's immediately placed in prison. Hannah's encounter with Taylor in America ultimately triggers a series of events whose momentum catches Hannah's family in its grip and forces her to make a heartrending choice."--BOOK JACKET.… (més)
Membre:DCFP
Títol:american darling-babel (ne) n°780
Autors:Banks russell (Autor)
Informació:ACTES SUD (2013), 576 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

Detalls de l'obra

The Darling de Russell Banks (2004)

  1. 01
    The Old Man Who Read Love Stories de Luis Sepúlveda (Babou_wk)
    Babou_wk: L'amour de la nature des peuples "indigènes". Les rites d'initiation. Les différences culturelles entre "blancs" et "indigènes".
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» Mira també 31 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 28 (següent | mostra-les totes)
I've long been a fan of Russell Banks so it was a nice surprise to find a book of his that I hadn't yet read when I went to the library last week.

Based on real events, The Darling follows Hannah Musgrave (AKA Dawn Carrington) through two decades as she escapes the US where she is wanted for her political activities with the Weather Underground and makes a new life for herself in Liberia.

I knew very little about the history of Liberia, so I found this book fascinating in that regard, but I did find Hannah to be a very difficult main character to like. She's a very cold woman, perhaps because she learned to supress her emotions to be able to do the work she had to do as a political radical. She has more compassion for the chimpanzees she looks after in Liberia than she does for her own family.

The books jumps around in time quite a bit, starting in the 1990s when Hannah has returned to the States and is living a quiet life on a farm in upstate New York. It's a place we return to several times, even as Hannah travels back to Liberia in search of the sons she left behind in the war-torn African nation and becomes mired in memories of the past.

We see her life in the 1970s, pre-Liberia as she lives in hiding from the US Government, still contributing to the radical political causes she has been devoted to since her college days. We see her arrival in Africa and eventual drift into Liberia where it is not long before she meets Woodrow, the low-level government official she eventually marries.

Hannah's introduction to Woodrow's family in a remote village does not go well, and is perhaps a hint at what the marriage will be like. Woodrow is not faithful, either to his wife, or to the president he purports to work for.

Charles Taylor, the man who will set Liberia's bloody revolution in motion is present as part of Woodrow and Hannah's social circle from the start, but it is not until well into the book that his true colours begin to show. And by then, his life and Hannah's are, intrinsically, if superficially linked, and with them, the fate of Liberia and its people.

I found this book fascinating, even though I can't say I particularly enjoyed a lot of it. Hannah's lack of emotional engagement with the people around her made it difficult to empathise with even the most horrific things she experiences. Yet she is not objective in her coldness to what unfolds, which made reading her account challenging. I have never experienced a narrator like this, which is again, interesting, even if I didn't particularly enjoy the approach.

But if you are at all interested in Liberia and its recent history, this gives a pretty good insight into what happened there. It's not a bad book by any means - it's well written and the characters remain consistent throughout - it's more that I just didn't enjoy spending the length of the novel with the narrator. It might just be me... ( )
  Vampyr14 | Jun 28, 2021 |
This book had two major conceptual problems for me:

1) The Orientalist nature that the narrator looks at Africa. It is so outside of her and her experience, even when she lives there for a quarter century. We can never empathize with any African character, because all of them are seen as monsters, incapable of the human emotions that the narrator feels. Frankly, if it weren't for the narrator's inability to connect with people outside of Africa, I would be calling this book racist.

2) The misunderstanding of radicalism and feminism. The narrator feels as if she has been crippled from her "natural instincts" by the feminist reworking of her life. As if being forced into the nuclear family as a domestic slave is anything close to natural. Patriarchy oppresses women, not feminism. Feminist reorganization of kinship, relationship, and parenting roles is not removing or deleting "natural instinct." It is removing the boot off of the neck of women and enabling them to be what they naturally are: human.

It was marginally entertaining, if wholly depressing. And the last page about 9/11 and the massive restructuring of US society to render people like her obsolete is an interesting insight. If I actually had to read this instead of listening to it during my commute on CDs, I may not have finished it. ( )
  magonistarevolt | Apr 30, 2020 |
Comment peut-on être si naïve, tellement aveugle à ce qui se passe réellement dans un pays dont on reconnaît la corruption quand on est engagée politiquement ? Hannah/Dawn, l'héroïne d'American Darling n'a vu du Liberia que ce qu'elle voulait bien en voir. Elle se voile la face, se met elle-même entre parenthèses lors de sa vie africaine.

Ce roman aurait pu être lourd, fort. Il apparaît pourtant dilué, la faute à une héroïne qui s'abstrait de sa propre vie : elle s'est engagée dans un mouvement révolutionnaire, a fui l'autorité pour ensuite se soumettre à un homme qui personnifie le conservatisme, à un pays dont elle identifie mais accepte le fonctionnement arbitraire et corrompu. Hannah vit sa vie en s'observant elle-même, ce qui la rend particulièrement détestable.

Oh, ce livre est solide et agréable à lire, mais il repose sur des décisions et un personnage qui me semblent incohérents. ( )
  miloshth | Sep 7, 2019 |
Hannah Musgrave, a member of the radical Weather Underground, flees to Africa when she thinks arrest is imminent. She marries a member of the corrupt Liberian government, has three sons and flees again - back to the U.S. when the government collapses. Upon her return to Liberia life is normal until it isn't, her husband is beheaded and her teenage sons join the current revolution. Hannah has spent much of her time in Liberia saving and caring for chimpanzees, but like many ardent animal lovers, hasn't much left over for other people. She returns to the U.S. for good, alone and older, having achieved little of lasting value. ( )
  Hagelstein | Aug 8, 2018 |
rabck from sweet sangria; Set mostly in Liberia, Hannah is a fugitive in the US and emigrates first to Ghana and then lands in Liberia, where she interviews for a job with Woodrow, whom she eventually marries. She likes her position as the white American wife of a black politician, but after her husband is murdered during the civil war and her children become boy soldiers, she is forced to flee. Very good, but the author tried to tidy up the ending too much. The video of her boys and the revelation that the CIA was manipulating her wasn't needed. ( )
  nancynova | Apr 18, 2018 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 28 (següent | mostra-les totes)
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After many years of believing that I never dream of anything, I dreamed of Africa.
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Wikipedia en anglès (1)

"The Darling is Hannah Musgrave's story, told emotionally and convincingly years later by Hannah herself. A political radical and member of the Weather Underground, Hannah has fled America to West Africa, where she and her Liberian husband become friends and colleagues of Charles Taylor, the notorious warlord and now ex-president of Liberia. When Taylor leaves for the Unites States in an effort to escape embezzlement charges, he's immediately placed in prison. Hannah's encounter with Taylor in America ultimately triggers a series of events whose momentum catches Hannah's family in its grip and forces her to make a heartrending choice."--BOOK JACKET.

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Melvil Decimal System (DDC)

813 — Literature American and Canadian American fiction

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Mitjana: (3.65)
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2 9
2.5 7
3 50
3.5 12
4 58
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