King Leopold’s Ghost
The highly acclaimed history of the Belgian Congo and the exploitation that led to the murder of 10 million – the background to Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness.
‘A riveting cast of characters: heroes, villains and bit-players, all extraordinary, all compelling tangles of neuroses and ambitions, all wonderfully drawn.’
Of all the great atrocities etched on to the conscience of the modern era there is one that stands largely forgotten. At the turn of the last century, King Leopold II of Belgium, driven by an insatiable lust for wealth and empire, unleashed a reign of terror on the vast swathe of land he had claimed as his personal fiefdom surrounding the Congo River. The fight to expose this horror not only triggered the 20th century’s first major human rights movement but also one of its defining novels, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. In a gripping history, Adam Hochschild reveals the truth behind both, recounting the extraordinary story of a power-crazed monarch whose bottomless avarice was only matched only by the courage of those who sought to expose him.
Three-quarter-bound in blocked cloth with a printed front board
Set in Bulmer
Frontispiece and 24 pages of colour and black & white plates
12 integrated black & white illustrations
9½˝ x 6¼˝