Set in an unnamed African country, Nobel Laureate V.S. Naipaul's A Bend in the River is narrated by Salim, a young man from an Indian family of traders long resident on the coast. He believes The world is what it is; men who are nothing, who allow themselves to become nothing, have no place in it. So he has taken the initiative; left the coast; acquired his own shop in a small, growing city in the continent’s remote interior and is selling sundries – little more than this and that, really – to the locals.
This spot, this ‘bend in the river’, is a microcosm of post-colonial Africa at the time of Independence: a scene of chaos, violent change, warring tribes, ignorance.
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Date of Publication: 14/02/2020