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Untapped: The Scramble for Africa's Oil

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Untapped: The Scramble for Africa's Oil Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Although Africa has long been known to be rich in oil, extracting it hadnt seemed worth the effort and risk until recently. But with the price of Middle Eastern crude oil skyrocketing and advancing technology making reserves easier to tap, the region has become the scene of a competition between major powers that recalls the nineteenth-century scramble for colonization there. Already the United States imports more of its oil from Africa than from Saudi Arabia, and China, too, looks to the continent for its energy security.What does this giddy new oil boom mean—for America, for the world, for Africans themselves? To find out, John Ghazvinian traveled through twelve African countries—from Sudan to Congo to Angola—talking to warlords, industry executives, bandits, activists, priests, missionaries, oil-rig workers, scientists, and ordinary people whose lives have been transformed—not necessarily for the better—by the riches beneath their feet. The result is a high-octane narrative that reveals the challenges, obstacles, reasons for despair, and reasons for hope emerging from the worlds newest energy hot spot.

Review:

"With American relations in the Middle East on shaky ground, the U.S. government and the petroleum industry have turned to Africa as a new source of oil, investing more than a billion dollars a year in the continent since 1990. China and India are also looking to African crude oil, which is 'lighter' and 'sweeter' than its Arab counterpart and thus requires less costly refining, to fuel their booming economies. So Ghazvinian, an Oxford historian armed with 'a suitcase full of notepads and malaria pills, and a sweaty money belt stuffed with $100 bills,' toured a dozen oil-producing nations to see how they'd been affected by the oil boom. What he finds is internal strife: in Nigeria, the only thing that keeps one group of interview subjects from assaulting him is that he doesn't work for Shell. Later, an official in the 'self-parodying burlesque of a tin-pot kleptocracy,' Equatorial Guinea, makes a not-so-veiled threat after soliciting a bribe falls through. Even more stable nations have their problems: in Gabon the national economy was so transformed by oil that the government has to import most of its food from neighboring countries. Ghazvinian's ground-level interviews bring perspective to the chaos, though readers may wish for a map to follow his path through the unfamiliar territory." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Book News Annotation:

In 2001, Iranian-born Ghazvinian (history, U. of Pennsylvania) set out on a six-month trip through 12 sub-Sahara African countries to get some first-hand information about challenges, obstacles, and reasons for hope and despair concerning oil from the region. He talked to politicians and political prisoners, economists and oil-rig workers, warlords and rebel militia leaders, diplomats and bankers, and others. He also visited Washington, London, and Paris. The result is a snapshot, he says, of a moment when Africa seems on the verge of playing in the big game. Annotation ©2007 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

To find out how the new oil boom is affecting Africa, Ghazvinian traveled the country for a firsthand look. The result is a high-octane narrative that reveals the challenges, obstacles, reasons for despair, and reasons for hope emerging from the worlds newest energy hot spot.

About the Author

JOHN GHAZVINIAN has a doctorate in history from Oxford. He has written for Newsweek, the Nation, Time Out New York, and other publications. Born in Iran and raised in London and Los Angeles, he currently lives in Philadelphia, where he teaches in the Critical Writing Program at the University of Pennsylvania.

Table of Contents

CONTENTS

 Preface ix

 Introduction 1

1. THE ONSHORE EFFECT 17

2. THE OFFSHORE ILLUSION 83

3. “A COUNTRY IN AFRICA” 126

4. INSTANT EMIRATES 166

5. PARADISE FOUND? 207

6. THE PLACE WHERE PEOPLE WAIT 245

7. THE CHINESE ARE COMING! . . . BUT WHO ISNT? 274

 Epilogue 296

 Acknowledgments 299

 A Note on Sources and Suggested Further Reading 302

 Index 307

Product Details

ISBN:
9780151011384
Subtitle:
The Scramble for Africa's Oil
Author:
Ghazvinian, John
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Subject:
International
Subject:
Industries - Energy Industries
Subject:
International Relations - General
Subject:
Africa - General
Subject:
International Relations - Trade & Tariffs
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20070409
Binding:
Hardback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Endpaper maps
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Business » General
History and Social Science » Africa » General
History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Ethnic Studies » General
History and Social Science » Politics » International Studies
History and Social Science » World History » Africa

Untapped: The Scramble for Africa's Oil Used Hardcover
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Product details 336 pages Harcourt - English 9780151011384 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "With American relations in the Middle East on shaky ground, the U.S. government and the petroleum industry have turned to Africa as a new source of oil, investing more than a billion dollars a year in the continent since 1990. China and India are also looking to African crude oil, which is 'lighter' and 'sweeter' than its Arab counterpart and thus requires less costly refining, to fuel their booming economies. So Ghazvinian, an Oxford historian armed with 'a suitcase full of notepads and malaria pills, and a sweaty money belt stuffed with $100 bills,' toured a dozen oil-producing nations to see how they'd been affected by the oil boom. What he finds is internal strife: in Nigeria, the only thing that keeps one group of interview subjects from assaulting him is that he doesn't work for Shell. Later, an official in the 'self-parodying burlesque of a tin-pot kleptocracy,' Equatorial Guinea, makes a not-so-veiled threat after soliciting a bribe falls through. Even more stable nations have their problems: in Gabon the national economy was so transformed by oil that the government has to import most of its food from neighboring countries. Ghazvinian's ground-level interviews bring perspective to the chaos, though readers may wish for a map to follow his path through the unfamiliar territory." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , To find out how the new oil boom is affecting Africa, Ghazvinian traveled the country for a firsthand look. The result is a high-octane narrative that reveals the challenges, obstacles, reasons for despair, and reasons for hope emerging from the worlds newest energy hot spot.
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