Hating Them

Nuruddin Farah

  • Out of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa by Keith Richburg
    New Republic/Basic Books, 257 pp, £20.00, June 1997, ISBN 0 465 00187 4

I have been thinking about Responsibility ever since visiting Mogadiscio last year: the householder’s responsibility to the household, that of the smaller community to the larger, of the larger to the entire nation, and of the nation to the world as a whole. I have thought about all this in reaction to the collapse of several African nations into civil anarchy, Somalia going the way of Liberia, and Rwanda and Burundi moving towards a similar collapse. I have been thinking, too, about the soldiers-in-power in the Gambia emulating those of Ghana, and of Nigeria, where I live for the time being, moving constantly to the brink of ungovernability. Freedom is of a piece with Responsibility, an informed Freedom which can help one know one’s place and role in the apocalyptic history of this continent and its peoples, wherever they are found.

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