<em>Stanley: The Impossible Life of Africa's Greatest Explorer</em> By Tim Jeal (2007)

No. 8

Oct 27, 2009
Outside Magazine
Yale University Press

He's known for laying down the greatest salutation in history—"Dr. Livingstone, I presume?"—but the search for missionary David Livingstone was just one of Sir Henry Morton Stanley's exploits. Raised in a British workhouse, he escaped to America at 18, fought in the Civil War (on both sides!), and made himself into a popular journalist. His search for Livingstone was a stunt news­paper assignment that turned into a life's work. Emboldened by his success, he became one of Africa's most courageous and ruinous explorers, opening the Congo to Belgian king Leopold II's cruel colonization. Jeal tries to rescue Stanley's reputation and half succeeds: Stanley didn't cause a century of exploitation. He just set it in motion.

Filed To: Culture

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