An Affair with Africa
Expeditions and Adventures Across a Continent
By (author) Alzada Carlisle Kistner
Affair with Africa by Alzada Carlisle Kistner
Book DescriptionIn June 1960, a young faculty wife named Alzada Kistner and her husband David, a promising entomologist, left their 18-month old daughter in the care of relatives and began what was to be a four month scientific expedition in the Belgian Congo. Three weeks after their arrival, the country was gripped by a violent revolution trapping the Kistners in its midst. Despite having to find their way out of numerous life-threatening situations, the Kistners were not to be dissuaded. An emergency airlift by the United States Air Force brought them to safety in Kenya where they continued their field work.Thus began three decades of adventures in science. In "An Affair with Africa," Alzada Kistner describes her family's African experience -- the five expeditions they took beginning with the trip to the Belgian Congo in 1960 and ending in 1972-73 with a nine-month excursion across southern Africa. From hunching over columns of ants for hours on end while seven months pregnant to eating dinner next to Idi Amin, Kistner provides a lively and humor-filled account of the human side of scientific discovery. Her wonderfully detailed stories clearly show why, despite hardship and danger -- and contrary to all of society's expectations -- she could not forsake accompanying her husband on his expeditions, and, to this day, continues to find the world "endlessly beckoning, a lively bubbling cauldron of questions and intrigue."In the spirit of Beryl Markham's "West with the Night" and Isak Dinesen's "Out of Africa," "An Affair with Africa" shares with readers the thoughts and experiences of a remarkable woman, one whose unquenchable thirst for adventure led her into a series of almost unimaginable situations.Readers -- from armchair travelers fascinated by stories of Africa to scientists familiar with the Kistners's work but unaware of the lengths to which they went to gather their data -- will find "An Affair with Africa" a rare treasure.
Buy Affair with Africa book by Alzada Carlisle Kistner from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
Book DetailsISBN: 9781559635318
(216mm x 152mm x 24mm)
Imprint: Island Press
Publisher: Island Press
Publish Date: 1-May-1998
Country of Publication: United States
US Kirkus Review » The adventures of a family spanning more than a decade of scientific expeditions to Africa in search of some of the tiniest of that continent's wildlife. Kistner, associate editor of the journal Sociobiology, is the gamely devoted wife of entomologist David Kistner, the world's foremost expert on myrmecophiles, beetles that live among ant colonies. Beginning in 1960, the young couple began an often harrowing but productive series of expeditions to Africa at a time when many Americans and Europeans were headed the other way to escape the instability of the end of the colonial era. In search of their small quarry, the Kistners, eventually with both of their young daughters in tow, spend long, dusty hours on all fours sucking up insects - sometimes thousands in one session - through an aspirator. But what readers will find more memorable in this unflaggingly cheery narrative are the family's frequent life-threatening encounters with both nature and man, from poisonous snakes and charging elephants (not to mention biting ants) to bandits and terrorists. They also experienced the last gasp of the European and especially British colonial period with its dinner parties, sumptuous houses, and colorful old Africa hands and colonial administrators. Then, too, the family by happenstance ran into some of the famous and infamous men who took their places, such as presidents Julius Nyerere of Tanzania and Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia, and in a brief but scary restaurant encounter, Ugandan dictator Idi Amin. Kistner tiptoes around the issue of apartheid in then Rhodesia and South Africa, only vaguely muttering her dissatisfaction with the policy and with white attitudes toward black Africans, but politics is only tangential to this account, which is really a rather remarkable family saga. While readers might get tired of stooping to examine ant nests with the Kistners, the portrait of Africa from nearly four decades back makes for an unusual tale. (Kirkus Reviews)
» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about Affair with Africa book by Alzada Carlisle Kistner and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a member - it's free to sign up!)
Bestselling Books: Our Current Bestsellers | Australia's Hottest 1000 Books | Bestselling Fiction | Bestselling Crime Mysteries and Thrillers | Bestselling Non Fiction Books | Bestselling Sport Books | Bestselling Gardening and Handicrafts Books | Bestselling Biographies | Bestselling Food and Drink | Bestselling History | Bestselling Travel Books | Bestselling School Textbooks & Study Guides | Bestselling Children's General Non-Fiction | Bestselling Young Adult Fiction | Bestselling Children's Fiction | Bestselling Picture Books | Top 100 US Bestsellers
Phone: 1300 36 33 32 (9am-5pm Mon-Fri AEST) - International: +61 2 9960 7998 - Online Form
Address: Boomerang Books, 878 Military Road, Mosman Junction, NSW, 2088
© 2003-2016. All Rights Reserved. Eclipse Commerce Pty Ltd - ACN: 122 110 687 - ABN: 49 122 110 687
For every $20 you spend on books, you will receive $1 in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars. You can use your Boomerang Bucks as a credit towards a future purchase from Boomerang Books. Note that you must be a Member (free to sign up) and that conditions do apply.