Summer Reading Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | July 24, 2014

Jessica Valenti: IMG Full Frontal Feminism Revisited



It is arguably the worst and best time to be a feminist. In the years since I first wrote Full Frontal Feminism, we've seen a huge cultural shift in... Continue »
  1. $11.90 Sale Trade Paper add to wish list

spacer

This item may be
out of stock.

Click on the button below to search for this title in other formats.


Check for Availability
Add to Wishlist

Bill Bryson's African Diary

by

Bill Bryson's African Diary Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In the late 1940s and early 1950s after he became a little too saggy to fit into a Tarzan loincloth without depressing popcorn sales among cinema audiences, the great Johnny Weissmuller filled the twilight years of his acting career with a series of low-budget adventure movies with titles like Devil Goddess and Jungle Moon Men, all built around a character called Jungle Jim. These modest epics are largely forgotten now, which is a pity because they were possibly the most cherishably terrible movies ever made.

The plots seldom got anywhere near coherence. My own favorite, called Pygmy Island, involved a lost tribe of white midgets and a strange but valiant fight against the spread of Communism. But the narrative possibilities were practically infinite since each Jungle Jim feature consisted in large measure of scenes taken from other, wholly unrelated adventure movies. Whatever footage was available--train crashes, volcanic eruptions, rhino charges, panic scenes involving large crowds of Japanese--would be snipped from the original and woven into Jungle Jim's wondrously accommodating story lines. From time to time, the ever-more-fleshy Weissmuller would appear on the scene to wrestle the life out of a curiously rigid and unresisting crocodile or chase some cannibals into the woods, but these intrusions were generally brief and seldom entirely explained.

I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that no more than four people at a time ever paid money to watch a Jungle Jim movie. The series might well have escaped my own attention except that in about 1959 WOI-TV, a television station well known in central Iowa for its tireless commitment to mediocrity, acquired the complete Jungle Jim oeuvre and for the next dozen or so years showed two of them back to back late every Friday night. What is especially tragic about all this is that I not only watched these movies with unaccountable devotion, but was indelibly influenced by them. In fact, were it not for some scattered viewings of the 1952 classic Bwana Devil and a trip on the Jungle Safari ride at Disneyland in 1961, my knowledge of African life, I regret to say, would be entirely dependent on Jungle Jim movies.

I can't say it actively preyed on me that my impressions of Africa were based so heavily on a series of B-movies made in California more than half a century ago, but when a personable young man named Dan McLean from the London office of CARE International, the venerable and worthy charity, asked me if I would be willing to go to Kenya to visit some of their projects and write a few words on their behalf, it occurred to me that there were some gaps in my familiarity with the Dark Continent that I might usefully fill in. So I agreed.

Some weeks later, I was summoned to CARE's London offices for a meeting with Dan, his boss Will Day and a rugged and amiable fellow named Nick Southern, CARE's regional manager for Kenya, who happened to be in London at the time. We sat around a big table spread with maps of Kenya, while they outlined what they had in mind for me.

"Of course, you'll have to fly to the refugee camp at Dadaab," Will observed thoughtfully at one point. He glanced at me. "To avoid the bandits," he explained.

Dan and Nick nodded gravely.

"I beg your pardon?" I said, taking a sudden interest.

"It's bandit country all round there," Will said.

"Where?"

Synopsis:

A travel writer with little background knowledge of Africa recounts his journey to Kenya at the invitation of CARE International, where he visited slums, historic sites, natural wonders, refugee camps, and relief projects.

Synopsis:

“Here is a man who suffers so his readers can laugh.” — Daily Telegraph

Bill Bryson travels to Kenya in support of CARE International. All royalties and profits go to CARE International.

Bryson visits Kenya at the invitation of CARE International, the charity dedicated to eradicating poverty. Kenya is a land of contrasts, with famous game reserves and a vibrant culture. It also provides plenty to worry a traveller like Bill Bryson, fixated as he is on the dangers posed by snakes, insects and large predators. It is also a country with many serious problems: refugees, AIDS, drought, and grinding poverty. The resultant diary, though short in length, contains the trademark Bryson stamp of wry observation and curious insight.

About the Author

Bill Bryson’s bestselling books include A Walk in the Woods, I’m a Stranger Here Myself, In A Sunburned Country, Bryson’s Dictionary of Troublesome Words, Bill Bryson's African Diary, and A Short History of Nearly Everything. He lives in Norfolk, England, with his wife and children.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307418845
Publisher:
Broadway Books
Subject:
History : Africa - General
Author:
Bryson, Bill
Author:
Bill Bryson
Subject:
Biography & Autobiography : General
Subject:
Travel : Africa - General
Subject:
Biography & Autobiography : Personal Memoirs
Subject:
General
Subject:
Travelers
Subject:
Africa
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Description and travel
Subject:
Kenya
Subject:
Africa - General
Subject:
Journeys
Subject:
Kenya Description and travel.
Subject:
Bryson, Bill - Journeys - Kenya
Subject:
Anthologies-General
Subject:
Biography - General
Subject:
TRAVEL / Africa
Subject:
Travel Writing-Africa and Middle East
Subject:
Travel Writing-General
Subject:
main_subject
Subject:
all_subjects
Publication Date:
20021203
Binding:
ELECTRONIC
Language:
English
Pages:
49

Related Subjects

Biography » General
History and Social Science » World History » Africa
Travel » Africa » General
Travel » Africa » Kenya
Travel » General

Bill Bryson's African Diary
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 49 pages Crown Publishing Group - English 9780307418845 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , A travel writer with little background knowledge of Africa recounts his journey to Kenya at the invitation of CARE International, where he visited slums, historic sites, natural wonders, refugee camps, and relief projects.
"Synopsis" by , “Here is a man who suffers so his readers can laugh.” — Daily Telegraph

Bill Bryson travels to Kenya in support of CARE International. All royalties and profits go to CARE International.

Bryson visits Kenya at the invitation of CARE International, the charity dedicated to eradicating poverty. Kenya is a land of contrasts, with famous game reserves and a vibrant culture. It also provides plenty to worry a traveller like Bill Bryson, fixated as he is on the dangers posed by snakes, insects and large predators. It is also a country with many serious problems: refugees, AIDS, drought, and grinding poverty. The resultant diary, though short in length, contains the trademark Bryson stamp of wry observation and curious insight.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.