Riding the Demon: On the Road in West Africa (Association of Writers and Writing Programs Award for Creative Nonfiction) Peter Chilson

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Published: March 1st 1999

Kindle Edition

216 pages


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Riding the Demon: On the Road in West Africa (Association of Writers and Writing Programs Award for Creative Nonfiction)  by  Peter Chilson

Riding the Demon: On the Road in West Africa (Association of Writers and Writing Programs Award for Creative Nonfiction) by Peter Chilson
March 1st 1999 | Kindle Edition | PDF, EPUB, FB2, DjVu, talking book, mp3, RTF | 216 pages | ISBN: | 4.40 Mb

In Niger, where access to rail and air travel requires overcoming many obstacles, roads are the nation’s lifeline. For a year in the early 1990s, Peter Chilson traveled this desert country by automobile to experience West African road culture. HeMoreIn Niger, where access to rail and air travel requires overcoming many obstacles, roads are the nation’s lifeline.

For a year in the early 1990s, Peter Chilson traveled this desert country by automobile to experience West African road culture. He crisscrossed the same roads again and again with bush taxi driver Issoufou Garba in order to learn one drivers story inside and out. He hitchhiked, riding in cotton trucks, and traveled with other bush taxi drivers, truckers, road engineers, an anthropologist, Nigers only licensed woman commercial driver, and a customs officer.The road in Africa, says Chilson, is more than a direction or a path to take. Once youve booked passage and taken your seat, the road becomes the center of your life.

Hurtling along at eighty miles an hour in a bush taxi equipped with bald tires, no windows, and sometimes no doors, travelers realize that theyve surrendered everything.Chilson uses the road not to reinforce Africas worn image of decay and corruption but to reveal how people endure political and economic chaos, poverty, and disease.

The road has reflected the struggle for survival in Niger since the first automobile arrived there, and it remains a useful metaphor for the fight for stability and prosperity across Africa.



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