The fictional African republic of Niagra is the unfortunate playground of a psychopathic despot called General Daudu, who presides over an orgy of corruption, poverty and torture in incomparably luxurious style. The wealth that he squanders comes from the sale of crude oil; and the backing he receives from America, and from the Burton Holly Corporation in particular, depends on its free flow. When the General is deposed in a bloodless coup the nation rejoices, and initially there seems no reason for international opinion to be alarmed.
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This 'jaunty narrative raises fundamental questions about the role of popular history. Should this just be a matter of telling tales, as the general public often seems to think?'
@DrLRoach weighs up Charles Spencer's account of the White Ship Disaster.
'Amis clearly belongs to the do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do school of pedagogy. More or less everything he says is demonstrably contradicted by elements of his own work, be they here or elsewhere.'
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