Learning To Love Africa - Monique Maddy
Upon graduating from Harvard Business School, Maddy, born in Liberia and educated in Britain and the U.S., relocates to Tanzania to execute a start-up business providing telephone service. With the excitement attendant to starting a new company and the soul-searching of a young woman on a mission, Maddy brings personal experience and a different perspective on the troubled history of conquest and colonization of Africa, including the resettlement of American slaves in Liberia. Having worked for the UN, Maddy also brings a perspective on capitalism versus the benevolent efforts of world organizations. She contrasts their ineffectiveness with the entrepreneurial heritage of the Mandingo, who have an extensive network of trade and finance throughout Africa, as well as her father's business enterprises and the foreign investment of Firestone and other companies in small, isolated towns that stand in stark contrast to the chaos of the surrounding country. Maddy is ultimately disappointed when her enterprise fails owing to local corruption, ineptitude, and bureaucracy, and she struggles to maintain her vision for self-reliance and entrepreneurialism in Africa.