Morenga: A Novel

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New Directions Publishing, 2003 - 340 pages
An exciting historical novel set in the early 20th Century, about a black African leader and a bloody civil war in German-occupied Southwest Africa. Morenga, an early novel by Uwe Timm (Headhunter, The Invention of Curried Sausage), engages the mind on many levelshistorical, political, human. Set in German South West Africa in the first decade of the 20th century, it recounts the conflict between the colonial German Empire and the rebellious Africans of the Hottentot and Herero tribes led by the legendary Morenga. A daring and brilliant military tactician referred to as the Herero bastard, he was fluent in several languages and by all reports a man of compassion, intelligence, and integrity leading his people towards freedom. Even though his revolt is suppressed and by the novel's end he is hunted down and killed, his importance as one of Africa's historic figures is assured. Morenga has a fascinating story and Timm tells it with an ingenious mix of fact and fiction. Recounted through the eyes of Gottschalk, an engaging fictional military veterinarian, the narrative blends quotations from actual historic sources with gripping accounts of everyday life and military excursions. As he has repeatedly shown himself to be, Timm is a master storyteller, and his imagined scenes and characters are as real as the factual material he weaves into the story. The parallels between past events and later German history with its notions of the Untermensch (subhuman) and racial inferiority are subtly brought to mind while significant philosophical, political, and human issues are at play. Morenga is an intriguing novel of scope and significance and it has been well served by Breon Mitchell's fine translation.
 

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MORENGA

User Review  - Kirkus

The German colonial experience in Africa is the subject of this dense, often fascinating 1983 novel by the German author (Midsummer Night, 1998, etc.).Relations between German colonists and both ... Read full review

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Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
4
Section 3
22
Section 4
24
Section 5
28
Section 6
33
Section 7
56
Section 8
75
Section 16
213
Section 17
248
Section 18
269
Section 19
277
Section 20
281
Section 21
299
Section 22
306
Section 23
313

Section 9
80
Section 10
88
Section 11
115
Section 12
120
Section 13
135
Section 14
177
Section 15
192
Section 24
328
Section 25
331
Section 26
332
Section 27
338
Section 28
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Uwe Timm was born in Hamburg, Germany. His first novel, Hot Summer, was published in 1974. New Directions publishes five of his novels, including the German best selling, The Invention of Curried Sausage, and the award winning, Morenga. After apprenticing as a furrier, Timm studied philosophy and philology in Paris and Munich. He is the 1989 winner of the Munich Literary Prize. He has been called an extraordinary story teller" (The New Yorker) and "one of the best living German Writers" (Kirkus Reviews).

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