One Way

Bernard Dadie Observes America
Author: Bernard Binlin Dadié
Translated by Jo Patterson. Foreword by Claude Bouygues
Paper – $22
978-0-252-06408-1
Publication Date
Paperback: 01/01/1994
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About the Book

Bernard Dadié follows in the tradition of Tocqueville and Céline, offering his impressions of America for a French-speaking audience---but in the style of an African griot. In One Way (originally titled Patron de New York), Dadié displays breezy humor while touching upon weighty issues, including racism, efficiency and the profit motive, and international politics. His reports are particularly interesting because they represent an African gaze on and discourse about the West, thus shifting the usual representation of the Other, in which the West offers the eye and the voice. Originally published in 1964, Dadié's book portrays a series of American vanities that remain enduringly provocative.

"Presents a vision of the United States through the eyes of a naive traveler, whose irony, humor, and quality of observation remind me very much of Montesquieu's Lettres Persanes."
-- Elisabeth Mudimbe-Boyi, Duke University