The author won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004. Informed by his three decades as an environmental activist and campaigner for democracy he surveys what is really hampering the continent's development and argues that the future of Africa lies not in international aid, but in the hands of Africans themselves. It's an inspiring vision.
Maathai argues that Africans need to revive their sense of identity, their cultural inheritance, and a shared sense of common purpose to face the challenges posed by endemic corruption, the legacies of colonialism and the Cold and civil wars, poverty, and most urgently climate change. Countless images of nameless starving children aimed at guilt-tripping westerners have been internalised, leading to a demoralised and passive inertia among millions of citizens. Elections may have spread but the true tenets of a democratic society are often tragically absent. Only once the continent has rediscovered its own cultural inheritance and history can it take active responsibility for its own future. Ultimately what Africa needs is a revolution in leadership, but this cannot be ushered in by western governments, well-meaning NGOs, or even Bono and Sharon Stone it must happen within African civil society itself. As in Unbowed, Maathai s voice is decisive, authoritative, and unsentimental.