Anthony Daniels

Following the Greenes

Chasing the Devil: The Search for Africa’s Fighting Spirit

By

Chatto & Windus 336pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

The Liberian Declaration of Independence of 1847 is a noble document: nobler, in fact, than the American, insofar as the freed slaves of America who founded the country had far more to complain of than the white colonists of North America ever had. It deserves to be better known:

We, the people of the Republic of Liberia, were originally inhabitants of the United States of North America.

In some parts of that country we were debarred from all rights and privileges of men – in other parts, public sentiment, more powerful than law, frowned us down.

We were everywhere shut out from all civil office.

We were excluded from all participation in Government.

We were taxed without our consent. 

We were compelled to contribute to the resources of a country which gave us no protection.

We were made a separate and distinct class and against us every avenue of improvement was effectually closed …

We uttered our complaints, but they were unattended to.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • Start your week with a dose of Russian Revolutionary zeal. Donald Rayfield reviews Tobie Mathew's 'Greetings From t… ,
    • A treat from the LR Archive: exactly 20 years ago, Malcolm Bradbury reviewed John Updike's 'Bech at Bay' ,
    • ‘When bullets come close, the noise they make as they go past changes from a zing to a crack’ John Lanchester's dy… ,
    • Man with a Bloody Paintbrush: Robin Simon on Lucian Freud ,
    • Jane Ridley reviews The Diaries of Kenneth Rose (ed. D R Thorpe) ,
    • ‘Look,’ says Trump. ‘The fact is I’m only human.’ On the evidence of this book that point is debatable. From the A… ,
    • From our December/January issue - here's John Banville's review of Colm Tóibín on the fathers of Wilde, Yeats and J… ,