Emily Hahn was one of the most prolific and enduring writers at The New Yorker - her first by-line appeared there in 1926, her last in 1996. She was also the author of fifty-three books, and, had her 1933 travel memoir, Congo Solo, not been published in a censored version during the darkest days of the Great Depression, it might well have been hailed as a classic of the genre, alongside Dinesen's Out of Africa. In many ways Hahn's vivid account of her eight-month sojourn in a remote medical clinic was years ahead of its time. A woman who lived life on her own terms, Hahn was an unknown and struggling writer when Congo Solo was published. Here - restored to the form she had intended - is Hahn's unforgettable narrative, a vivid, provocative, and at times disturbing firsthand account of the racism, brutality, sexism, and exploitation that were everyday life realities under Belgium's iron-fisted colonial rule. Until now, the few copies of Congo Solo in circulation were the adulterated version, which the author altered after pressure from her publisher and threats of litigation from the main character's family. This edition makes available a lost treasure of women's travel writing that shocks and impresses, while shedding valuable light on the gender and race politics of the period.
Biographies-Memoirs, Ethnic-National, African-American-Black,