Saturday, March 13, 2010

Last Days of the Imperium

I currently find myself reading Ryszard Kapuscinski's Imperium that takes one on a journey through the final stages of the Soviet Union, visiting many cities far and wide and giving one a decaying portrait of this failed state.  Kapuscinski is a Polish foreign correspondent who has written many excellent accounts including books published on Angola (Another Day of Life) and Iran (Shah of Shahs) through Granta.  He has a wonderful wit and sense of irony as well as fantastic descriptive sense, leading the reader through various former Soviet cities much like the fictional Marco Polo in Invisible Cities.  If one is looking for an engaging and initmate view of what it was like in those last days of the Soviet Union -- this is it.

1 comment:

  1. Let no man rest in peace. A new biography challenges Kapuscinski's journalistic approach, claiming that he blurred the line between fact and fiction in his accounts. However, Artur Domoslawski says that he did not set out to disparage the famed Polish foreign correspondent, and says he still has great respect for Kapuscinski. He has also made allegations that Kapuscinski had ties to the communist apparatus. Here's more,