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Travels in the Interior of Africa Paperback – Dec 17 2010

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications; Reprint edition (Jan. 14 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486479137
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486479132
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 2 x 21.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #576,322 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Mungo Park was a Scottish explorer of the African continent.He is credited as being the first Westerner to encounter the Niger River. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars 23 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating May 14 2011
By Randall Krippner - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I don't write reviews often but I had to respond to the comments of "Raspberry", who reviewed this book. Contrary to what the reviewer said, there are no dull lists. what you will find are descriptions of people, ways of living, and cultures that, up until that time, had never been encountered before by Europeans. Born in 1771, Mungo Park was a doctor, shipboard surgeon and by the age of 24, an African explorer. He spent two and a half years in Africa on his first trip, ending in 1797. in 1805 he embarked on a second trip to try to find the source of the Niger river, dying during the journey. this book concerns his first expedition.

It is a fascinating document which describes his journey, encounters with various local people, their customs, etc.

This is not a fast paced 'thriller' or modern travel book. It was written for a late eighteenth century audience who were less familiar with Africa than we are with Mars. He often gives descriptions of plants and animals which, while we may be familiar with them today, were strange to his audience.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Required Reading Sept. 15 2015
By J. Price - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A very well written first-person account of Mungo Park's visit to Africa in the late 1700s. This book should be required reading for all high school graduates, since reading it would clear up many false notions connected with African/American slavery. Although Mr. Parks was anti-slavery, he plainly states that 75% of Africans were slaves to the other 25%, and that the buying and selling of slaves among Africans and the selling of slaves to Europeans were as common and natural as life itself.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatest African Explorer of all time. May 9 2010
By Paul I. Dukel Jr. - Published on
Format: Paperback
Personally, I don't like Amazon's 5 star rating system, in my opinion too many people rate books 5 star, which in my mind would be a book 100% perfect in every category. To me this is practically unattainable. So I give this book a 5 star rating with reservations, I would prefer a 4 3/4 rating if this were possible. There should be a 7 star rating system, with 7 stars being practically unattainable.
Having said this, this is the greatest work of travel and exploration I have ever read. And I have read the greatest, all the African greats; Burton, Baker, Stanley, Livingston, Mary Kingsley & etc., etc. Also the North American giants; Lewis & Clark, Champlain, La Salle, Jedediah Smith and the rest; and most of the South Americans of fame, Spruce, Bates, Humbolt, Dr. Richard Schultes And last but not least the the Asian explorers, such as Doughty, Thessiger, Hedin and many more. I say this so you know where I'm coming from. But "Travels into the Interior of Africa" by Mungo Park is my favorite. Read it and you may agree with me, I don't know why this book is so ignored, especially after reading so many rave reviews on Amazon on Mary Kingsley's, "Travels in West Africa" {but she deserves it}.There are heart touching as well as humorous scenes in this book especially in his encounters with African women. Park's courage, perseverance, humility, humanity and his empathy for the African peoples he encounters as well as his informative account of the exotic makes this book a great read. The "good, the bad, and the ugly" are all here, and it is written in a straightforward and manly style.To me he was truly one of the greatest explorers of all times!
I have a more expensive edition of this work but it sure looks like this "Wordsworth" edition is a good buy!I've got to check out more of their titles on African exploration if any are available!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential read on early African exploration March 2 2012
By Fantasyman - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book, and the second volume, comprise one of the most incredible true tales of adventure you will ever read. Mungo Park was not only a keen observer of people, their character and customs, he also had a keen eye for the lands he traveled through. This is a tremendously well written personal narrative of one man's journey through deepest, darkest Africa to places no white man had ever been before.

Mungo Park's story of his first journey to Africa, told in his own words, comprises one of the most compelling tales of adventure I have ever read. That he survived this journey at all may be the most sensational aspect of this record of his travels. It would be wonderful to be able to read the narrative of his second journey into Africa, unfortunately, he was killed on that trip and his journal was never recovered.

Wikipedia has a very nice article on him.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars History and Adventure Sept. 5 2011
By A Critic - Published on
Format: Paperback
The first journey is a pretty well-written account (polished by a ghost-writer) that compares favorably to any true-life adventure story. Park provides many sociological and economic details of the different villages and groups he encounters, along the Gambia and Niger, during his unsuccessful treck to find the source of the latter. Though he is often robbed and ill-treated, he also, at times, encounters compassion and friendship. As a result, his account is probably more humanistic than some others. Of course, there were no cannibals in the part of the continent he explored.

Many will be surprised by Park's account of slavery. Park estimated that about two-thirds of the Africans he encountered along his trip were slaves to other blacks. He also thought that human trafficking in Africa was not substantially exacerberated by encounters with Europeans.

The second journey is shorter, much drier and unpolished: essentially it is Park's mostly unannotated diary. Delays led to the men undertaking the journey during the wet-season, and the deathcount due to disease is staggering. Out of the forty white men who initially set out, only three, including Park himself, survived their maladies to meet a violent end. The author adds a short account of some of the rumors that escaped Africa when the expedition was well overdue. The guide of the second leg of the trip was later tracked down and able to provide a non-eyewitness account of Mr. Park's untimely end.

Anyone interested in the pre-colonial history of Africa would be well-advised to read this book.