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China's Second Continent: How a Million Migrants Are Building a New Empire in Africa (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – Rauer Buchschnitt, 20. Mai 2014


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A 2014 New York Times Notable Book

“Extraordinary…French delves into the lives of some of the one million-plus Chinese migrants he says are now building careers in Africa…and the stories [he] tells are fascinating.”
The New York Times Book Review

“Riveting…As a massive transactional process, China’s entry into Africa has been a dramatic success...but as an ideological and cultural undertaking, Mr. French’s masterly account suggests that it is getting nowhere.”
The Economist

“Howard French…let[s] the Africans and Chinese speak for themselves as he travels through fifteen countries. The result is a rich, complex, and satisfying look at this strange marriage.”
The New York Review of Books

“In his important new book, French weaves a rich tapestry of anecdotes, interspersed with numerous interviews with Chinese migrants and Africans alike, offering readers an eminently fair, occasionally humorous and sympathetic, but always engaging account….A searing, trenchant, and entertaining study of how China, in both an individual and collective sense, is shrewdly and opportunistically maximizing its relationships with African nations in an effort to extend its economic influence across the world. ”
The Christian Science Monitor

“China’s trade with Africa has grown dramatically…But China’s investments…are less significant for this rapidly evolving relationship, according to this 15-country survey by veteran African correspondent French, than the significant flow of new Chinese immigrants—often pushed out by the pressure and oppression back home as much as lured by opportunity. In vivid first-person reportage, French explores this momentous phenomenon, while challenging assumptions about China and Chinese immigrants…The book will appeal to students of China and Africa, and anyone interested in the shifting contours of the global economy and its geopolitical consequences.”
Publishers Weekly

“Although several recent books have discussed…China’s recent incursions into Africa in pursuit of resources and profit,…French has the advantage of significant personal experience in both Africa and China….Interacting with Chinese and Africans in Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Namibia, and elsewhere, French capably illustrates that although Chinese omnipresence in Africa may be a form of soft imperialism, it is also a result of the crushing pressures—lack of space, merciless business competition, pollution—of modern Chinese society.”
Booklist

“Accounts of China’s foray into African markets are often made with numbers; French goes beyond the statistics and illuminates the accelerating involvement of Chinese migrants….These candid moments are arresting, delivered via seasoned and sensitive reporting.”
Democracy

“The huge and growing ties between China and the African continent will be one of the most crucial relationships of the 21st century, and you simply could not invent a better guide to it than Howard French. Superbly written, rich in anecdote, insight, and a sense of the immense scale of what is happening, China’s Second Continent should be mandatory reading for anyone wanting to understand how our world is being reshaped.”
—Adam Hochschild, author, King Leopold’s Ghost

“We owe tremendous thanks to Howard French for this fascinating and deeply reported book. He is an audacious writer who takes his readers to the far-flung factories, farms and living rooms of the Chinese entrepreneurs who are flooding into countries like Mozambique, Zambia and Senegal. French intrepidly explores the other side of the global coin, giving voice to an array of Africans reacting warily to the new imperialists in their midst. This is an essential book for understanding not just China and Africa but our changing world.”
—Peter Maass, author, Crude World

“Almost no other writer would have dared the reportorial and story-telling challenge Howard French has set for himself in China’s Second Continent, and absolutely none could have pulled it off as well. This is foreign reportage and analysis presented as compelling human drama.”
—James Fallows, author, China Airborne


“In Howard French’s wonderfully engaging new book, he draws on his journalistic experience covering both China and Africa to weave together a series of vivid portraits which limn the country’s global rise in this remote and unlikely part of the world. What is so surprising about the stories he tells is that they chronicle everything from the constriction of massive stadiums, hospitals, universities, highways and mineral and energy extraction operations to small-scale shops, farms and family businesses. China’s Second Continent is a grand tale of the world’s newest diaspora, one that promises to change a previously largely forgotten continent.”
—Orville Schell, Director, The Center on US-China Relations, Asia Society

“Howard French has given us the most lush, fair, and expansive look yet at China’s role in Africa. This is a tale not strictly about China or Africa; it is about the encounter of civilizations and the energy produced in the collision. Infused with thought and sympathy, this is a book with no agenda other than fidelity to facts that were so difficult to gather on the ground.”
—Evan Osnos, staff writer, The New Yorker
 
“Is China’s burgeoning empire in Africa a ‘win-win’ for both parties? For the most comprehensive, closely-reported answer to this question, read this book. It’s full of surprises, from hard-driving frontiersmen looking for (and finding) countries with less corruption than they faced at home in China to healthy democracies constraining the more rapacious practices of extractive industry. I cannot imagine a better, more-qualified guide to this vast, fascinating subject than Howard French.” 
—William Finnegan, author, A Complicated War: The Harrowing of Mozambique

“Howard French magisterially holds up both ends of his transcontinental bargain: fluent in the idioms of the two worlds, China and Africa, he reveals the variegated diaspora of the one million or so Chinese in Africa yet also drives home that Africa is awakening in turn. His pages are teeming with human beings of flesh and blood, and often outlandish characters, at the new frontier explored in this fascinating book.”
—Stephen W. Smith, former Africa editor of Le Monde and professor at Duke University

“An important contribution to a critical debate on China’s rapidly changing relationship with Africa. Howard French goes beyond official statistics to weave stories of new wave Chinese immigrants and the Africans whose lives they impact. Unlike ideologues who focus on motives, French seeks to discern the impact of this relationship on all drawn into its vortex.”
—Mahmood Mamdani, Executive Director, Makerere Institute of Social Research, Kampala, Uganda and Herbert Lehman Professor of Government, Columbia University

 
“Howard French is one of the most insightful American journalists to have covered Africa in the past twenty years. In this riveting and rich new book, he powerfully juxtaposes two worlds he is uniquely positioned to observe, namely China and Africa. Anyone who has recently spent time in Africa knows how important China is becoming on the continent. Yet French tells a nuanced story about the Chinese few will have previously understood. His storytelling is sharp and wise, the characters we meet are vivid and unforgettable, and the implications are profound and at times disturbing. Anyone interested in Africa and China, or more generally in migration and globalization, will find a wealth of material in this terrific book.”
—Scott Straus, professor of political science at University of Wisconsin, Madison

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Howard W. French wrote from Africa for The Washington Post and The New York Times. At the Times, he was bureau chief in Central America and the Caribbean, West and Central Africa, Japan, and China. He is the recipient of two Overseas Press Club awards and a two-time Pulitzer Prize nominee. The author of A Continent for the Taking: The Tragedy and Hope of Africa, he has written for The Atlantic, The New York Review of Books, The New York Times Magazine, and Rolling Stone, among other national publications. He is on the faculty of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He lives in New York.

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Format: Kindle Edition
When someone mentions the migration, our first association is usually America for all those who over the centuries came to this promised land full of opportunities or Europe for all the people who today still using different ways, mostly from Asia and Africa, are trying to reach the continent that guarantees them security and a better life. But think of Africa as a country in which people are massively moving in, for most people will be completely unknown, except for those who are more familiar with the situation on black continent.

One such man is Howard French, former NY Times correspondent from China and Africa who in his book ‘China's Second Continent’ is telling an interesting story about Africa becoming second continent in the number of Chinese who live in it. French in his book speaks about the second, more human side of Chinese presence in African societies, talking about the changes that it already has, and in particular that will have on the future of Africa.

He spent a lot of time researching for this book, so it is no surprise that on the pages of his book he managed to present numerous cases of Chinese immigrants, of those extremely wealthy, to those who came from China without anything, uneducated, but still believing that Africa offers them better opportunities than their overpopulated homeland.

It is interesting to see that even though we live in the 21st century, many of the historical lessons learned at the time of the mass settling of America is today repeated in Africa, such as colonial exploration of nature resources and human labor or projects on which are those in charge trying to save beyond reasonable measure.
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Kommentar War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich? Ja Nein Feedback senden...
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Wir konnten Ihre Stimmabgabe leider nicht speichern. Bitte erneut versuchen
Von busterle am 18. August 2014
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Sehr lesenswert für den am weiteren Verlauf von Chinas wirtschaftlicher Zukunft interessierten Leser.
Schöne " Fallbeispiele" , die jeweilige Mentalität wiederspiegelnd.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 54 Rezensionen
19 von 20 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A travelogue 11. Juli 2014
Von SMS - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I thought the book intended to provide an account of the Chinese migrants experiences, instead the book is a personal travelogue attempting to provide analysis on the theme based on a string of analogies.

No doubt the author has enjoyed quite an adventure writing this book and there are interesting experiences being told. However, the book is a story of the author' travels and encounters with Chinese people as opposed to telling the stories of Chinese who moved to Africa. ¨

Other parts of the book consists of analysis on the subject of Chinese migration to Africa, but anecdotal stories nearly always provide a poor source of information to draw wider observations from, which some factual errors in the book confirm. I understand the need to tie the various stories together by making some general observations and providing a contextual backdrop for the stories, however the book stretches beyond its capacity in this regard.

Overall I felt as if the book didn't really know what chair to sit on: a collection of personal stories of the struggles and successes of Chinese migrants would make for a fascinating read on its own and provide insights on an individual level; while a book stretching further into deeper observations require a more systematic research approach which was beyond the scope of this book. This book thus falls somewhere in between these two, not fully achieving either.

The author does nonetheless collect a bunch of highly interesting encounters which makes the book worth a read, but I often found myself skipping passages to get to these parts.
16 von 17 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Valuable Contribution to the Discussion 19. Juli 2014
Von Viajero de La Jolla - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I know very little about Africa except for our media's portrayal of it. I know a lot about China, having lived there for many years and speaking the language. But China is a civilization posing as a nation-state, and its venerable history and dizzying pace of modernization constantly defy easy understanding. Putting China and Africa together, oddly enough, turns out to be a formula to better understand both. And that is what Howard French accomplishes in his latest book, China's Second Continent: How a Million Migrants Are Building a New Empire in Africa.

A well-traveled, well-educated, and multi-lingual American journalist, French presents a rare, if not unique, perspective on the Chinese experience in Africa and the African experience of China. The author for the most part steers clear of the ideological grand posturing too often found in Western coverage of China's involvement in Africa. Rather, his reporting reads refreshingly like a travelogue sprinkled with the almost reflexive musings of the traveler along his journey.

Yet through those musings, along with the abundance of "as is" observations, emerges a much more serious and thought-provoking sense of a complex reality. French's unique contribution is that he writes not so much about "China" as a polity but more about the experience of individual Chinese emigrants and their African hosts at the personal level. And as individuals, we are each and every one different and cannot be reduced to simple statistics or generalization. Hence the richness of those personal stories creates space for the reader to interpret and come to his / her own conclusions.

A blemish of the book is French's seeming lack of awareness that his identity as a Western journalist inevitably affects his interviewees' answers. This is known as "anticipation" in the field of scientific survey, where interviewees try to anticipate the biases of the interviewer and then feed the interviewer answers that they think the interviewer will find agreeable. Psychologically, this behavior seems to arise from a desire to please or to seek approval. Conversely, some interviewees, having established hostility towards the interviewer, may intentionally provide untruthful or exaggerated answers in an attempt to unsettle or provoke. A potential solution to this problem with French's book would be the plethora of social media postings by younger, technologically-savvy Chinese migrants who document and comment on their lives in Africa, primarily to an audience of their own friends and family (rather than a Western journalist). A summary presentation, or even just a sample, of those postings by Chinese migrants for their Chinese readers would have rounded out French's otherwise excellent and invaluable body of first-hand research.

Regardless of the above, French's book is a serious piece of professional journalism and rich contribution to the discussion. His book makes good reading for policy makers and entrepreneurs in China, Africa, and the West alike. We are all part of this story, some more directly than others. And we have an opportunity to learn from the tragedies of history and collectively strive for a better outcome this time around.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Reporter's Ground View of China's Development of Africa 22. Juli 2014
Von Alastair Browne - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Having read several books on the Chinese in Africa, I found many surprises in this one. This is because Howard French, the author, who was a journalist able to speak English, French, Portuguese, and Mandarin Chinese traveled all around the Africa and saw firsthand what the Chinese are doing. This book will not disappoint.
If you are worried about the Chinese colonizing Africa for their resources, I don't think you need be. Yes, Africa is China's new land of opportunity. Many Chinese are migrating there not only to mine resources, but to set up shops, farms, and many, over a million, are settling to live there permanently, even to interbreed with the native Africans.
Howard French has traveled all around Africa observing the Chinese in action in places like Mozambique, Tanzania, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Niger, Ghana, and Namibia, a good cross portion of the continent. The Chinese are mining Africa's resources, and farming a lot of virgin soil to supply their own country with food, and in return, they are building roads, bridges, hospitals, theaters, sports stadiums, and other facilities useful to the Africans. But don't be fooled. The Chinese are not doing this for altruistic reasons, and there is a lot unseen beneath the surface. The Chinese say they are not involved in politics, but political figures in Africa are bribed in favor of Chinese companies over others. Many of the workers are Chinese, and not African, and many Africans are getting angry. The Chinese claim the Africans are lazy. High level jobs go to Chinese. The African workers who are hired are paid low level wages, not enough to live on, are treated badly, and work in poor working conditions. Much of the buildings they build are not of high quality, and have been known to fall apart, bit by bit, after a few years. Even the roads get washed out now and then. Nothing is mentioned about the bridges.
This policy is called infrastructure for resources, and much of the Africa is still dazzled by what the Chinese are giving them, and what the Chinese are getting in return. It is understandable on the part of the Chinese that their country has over 1.3 billion people, and they must be provided for, and there are not enough resources in China alone to do this, so they must look elsewhere.
Many of the Chinese are migrating to Africa for opportunities they cannot get at home, and they succeed in Africa where they would fail in China, in small businesses. Many others are leaving to start new lives as farmers, or just want to escape from the intensity of China's population and government.
Many of the natives that sell their own wares are being nudged out by the Chinese, with them selling "cheap African goods" made in China. There is a racial barrier between the Africans and the Chinese, and many Africans don't like them. In addition, there is the fear of the Chinese exhausting Africa's resources, including their forests.
There is also corruption, and soon, the Chinese, whether they want to or not, will be pulled into African politics. One concern that I have is, what will happen when the infrastructure China is building starts to deteriorate? It does have to be maintained, and the Chinese are not known for top quality goods, and the Africans are not known for maintaining roads and bridges once they go.
Howard French has talked with both Chinese and Africans, in their native languages, and has come out with little known facts of this venture. It may be that the honeymoon is over, and the Chinese may have to face the adversity of being in other countries, even if it's beneficial to the natives.
At the end of the book, you may wonder why the Americans never contributed to this. Mr. French mentions that America and Europe sent doctors and nurses to inoculate Africans against deadly diseases, thereby saving lives. China provides the material benefits, while the Western world provides the unseen benefits.
17 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
This reader is skeptical, not of the conclusions, but the rhetoric 4. Juli 2014
Von schadenfreude - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
If you haven't read anything about the relationship between China and Africa, this is a good introduction. The book has a nice flow in some places, in other places the stop-and-go rhythm gets tedious. The author creates just enough interest to make the reader want more. Instead, he's already off to another country or region. It also seems as every Chinese businessman and every African say exactly the same thing, no matter what country or business they are in. So every stereotype is infinitely repeated: the contempt of Chinese for Africans, the sense of endless exploitation of Africans by the Chinese. Add to that the view from both parties that corruption rules. As Howard W. French persists in presenting himself as the aloof, polyglot, all-knowing, and perfectly innocent American, his sins of omission become more and more obvious. This reader may agree with his conclusions while regretting that any foreign contributions to the African continent are shown in the worst light possible, except for the American AIDS fighting PEPFAR program. What exactly is the author's agenda, given his sterling professional accomplishments? In the same genre of politics through travels and narratives, I'll take Greene, Naipaul or even Kaplan any time. At least the first two are real authors, leaving traces long after their books are put down.
9 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Interesting and fascinating presentation of Africa as Promised Land for Chinese 28. Mai 2014
Von Denis Vukosav - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
When someone mentions the migration, our first association is usually America for all those who over the centuries came to this promised land full of opportunities or Europe for all the people who today still using different ways, mostly from Asia and Africa, are trying to reach the continent that guarantees them security and a better life. But think of Africa as a country in which people are massively moving in, for most people will be completely unknown, except for those who are more familiar with the situation on black continent.

One such man is Howard French, former NY Times correspondent from China and Africa who in his book ‘China's Second Continent’ is telling an interesting story about Africa becoming second continent in the number of Chinese who live in it. French in his book speaks about the second, more human side of Chinese presence in African societies, talking about the changes that it already has, and in particular that will have on the future of Africa.

He spent a lot of time researching for this book, so it is no surprise that on the pages of his book he managed to present numerous cases of Chinese immigrants, of those extremely wealthy, to those who came from China without anything, uneducated, but still believing that Africa offers them better opportunities than their overpopulated homeland.

It is interesting to see that even though we live in the 21st century, many of the historical lessons learned at the time of the mass settling of America is today repeated in Africa, such as colonial exploration of nature resources and human labor or projects on which are those in charge trying to save beyond reasonable measure.

Therefore French work is in same time interesting and fascinating, both because of representation what Africa is today because of Chinese, and even more so because of what it can be concluded that will happen tomorrow. In this sense, author managed to show not only industrial and cultural changes in Africa that are in progress due to the influence of Chinese, but also raise some interesting questions about the future cooperation of Africa and China as potential future force that together could rule the world by combining their resources, knowledge and apparent inexhaustible willingness.

As a result, French book ‘China's Second Continent’ is very interesting non-fiction release that is certainly worth time spent on reading this well-made and intriguing work.
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