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Mugabe: Power, Plunder, and the Struggle for Zimbabwe's Future

3.68  ·  Rating Details ·  237 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
Robert Mugabe came to power in Zimbabwe in 1980 after a long civil war in Rhodesia. The white minority government had become an international outcast in refusing to give in to the inevitability of black majority rule. Finally the defiant white prime minister Ian Smith was forced to step down and Mugabe was elected president. Initially he promised reconciliation between whi ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published September 25th 2007 by PublicAffairs (first published 2002)
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Jun 08, 2016 Gary rated it it was amazing
This book outlines the career of an evil and utterly ruthless man who emerged from being a key figure in a guerrilla war fought against white minority rule, to engineering through intimidation and terror a victory in Zimbabwe's first all-inclusive elections over the moderate Abel Muzorewa's United African national Congress and Joshua Nkomo's Zimbabwe African People's Union.

After returning to Salisbury on January 27, 1980. after five years in exile, Mugabe was given a hero's welcome by a large cr
Dylan Groves
Dec 15, 2016 Dylan Groves rated it liked it
bobby liked power.
Mark Desrosiers
Aug 19, 2008 Mark Desrosiers rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
I'll admit it: I used to like Mugabe. Back in the 80s, he was one of the loudest and most articulate African leaders busting the balls of South African apartheid, and in the dewy idealism of my youth I had a knee-jerk fondness for humorless straight-edge Catholic Marxists.

But after reading this book, I'm convinced Mugabe is the absolute worst socialist head of state ever. Not in terms of body count of course (Stalin's got that record down), but in his ability to efficiently marshal the sloppies
Oct 22, 2012 Brian rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Incredibly biased. Not to downplay Mugabe's crimes, but the book posits him as coming from nowhere, as opposed to the hideous white racism of British colonialism or the homegrown variety in Rhodesia.
Jan 25, 2009 Trey rated it really liked it
Shelves: popular-academic
A great book about a horrible man. He does a good job portraying the excitement around Mugabe's election as well as the heart break when Mugabe turned out to be a feckless thug.
Michael Connolly
Mar 05, 2012 Michael Connolly rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed, africa
Robert Mugabe received his early education from Jesuits. Mugabe studied Marxism at Fort Hare University College in South Africa in 1949-1952. He was also exposed to Marxism when he visited Ghana in the late 1950s. Originally, he planned to become a teacher.
But he became politicized upon his return to Rhodesia in 1960. Mugabe was one of the leaders of a long military struggle against white rule. The white Rhodesian Front leader, Ian Smith, put Robert Mugabe in prison in 1964. Mugabe spent eleven
Mar 28, 2008 Michalyn rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: those interested in Africa, current events, development
Shelves: non-fiction, 2008
I knew very little about Zimbabwe until recently and then it was as the country experiencing one of the highest recorded inflation rates in the world (estimates are at about 130,000%). I wanted to know what kind of government would so recklessly impoverish its people and I found my answer in Mugabe: Power, Plunder, and the Struggle for Zimbabwe's Future.

Meredith traces Zimbabwe's struggle for independence and with it, the rise of Robert Mugabe. How a man once viewed as a visionary and liberator
Mar 03, 2011 Larry rated it really liked it
God bless Africa, guard her Children, guide her Rulers & give her peace.

The words to the prayer appear to have fallen on deaf ears before & after independence in Zimbabwe. Thank God Hitler didn't have a role model like Mugabe in the late 20s.

Meredith portrays a well educated man broken by the pre-independence system into wanting revenge. He's main aim to gain the ballot at the barrel of a gun. This never happened with the Lancaster House accord. The rest is history I guess.

I enjoyed t
Debra J.
Mar 13, 2008 Debra J. rated it liked it
Shelves: africa
Gives an historical account of what happened since the victory of Robert Mugabe and ZANU, although it's short on the analysis of why things happened as they did. As someone who cheered the vistory at the time, it provided one piece to my understanding of what when wrong.
Kenghis Khan
May 06, 2009 Kenghis Khan rated it really liked it
Easily one of the more compelling political biographies I've read in a long time. I think a few more on how Mugabe himself degenerated from an idealistic revolutionary to the current clown would have been nice.
Jan 02, 2008 Andrew rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone Interested in African History or Politics
This book is a great look at what Robert Mugabe has done to the once beautiful Zimbabwe. It follows his rise to power, and then details quite well what he did to keep that power, all at the expense of his people and his country.
Silvia Iskandar
Apr 17, 2012 Silvia Iskandar rated it liked it
His name was on the news all the time that I decided I wanted to know who he is. This book is written dryly, thus, unbiased, of Mugabe, the ruthless despot. It gives you full information how he turned from a promising leader to a paranoid dictator.
Amanda Coton
Oct 09, 2012 Amanda Coton rated it liked it
I really enjoyed this as I didnt know anything about this man before I visited Zimbabwe. He's an odd but intelligent guy.
Hanneke Vlak
Jun 23, 2016 Hanneke Vlak rated it really liked it
Sad commentary on how Mugabe plundered his country and forced it's citizens live in abject poverty. And he is a so called man of God????
Nathan Kavumbura
Oct 22, 2010 Nathan Kavumbura rated it really liked it
A concise, well narrated history of modern day Zimbabwe unfortunately it just stops short of when things really got interesting. Maybe this would be a good place to start for the sequel.
Jan 25, 2008 Cyanne marked it as to-read
Martin Meredith is great. This is a good one for getting an intro to Zim. Well researched and an easy and enjoyable read.
Brian rated it liked it
Sep 01, 2012
Danforth rated it really liked it
Apr 09, 2013
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Nov 12, 2014
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Feb 28, 2013
Eileen rated it really liked it
Nov 25, 2012
Amin Afridi
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Apr 29, 2016
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Mar 03, 2015
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Martin Meredith is a historian, journalist and biographer, and author of many acclaimed books on Africa.

Meredith first worked as a foreign correspondent in Africa for the Observer and Sunday Times, then as a research fellow at St Antony’s College, Oxford. Residing near Oxford, he is now an independent commentator and author.

Meredith’s writing has been described as authoritative and well-documented
More about Martin Meredith...

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