An Oxford graduate born in the West Indies, 29-year-old Phillips (A State of Independence has suffered from racial discrimination ever since first coming to London as a child. In these short notes on a year's international wanderings, he speculates on the problems of minority peoples living amongst ""the European tribe,'' which has forced its languages and cultures on the world. In Casablanca, the poverty of the Moroccan people is at variance with his memories of the movie classic; in Venice, he reflects on Shakespeare's Shylock and Othello; on a Paris Metro platform his arm is grabbed by a young black man who has been pickpocketed by whites; and in Amsterdam, he visits the Anne Frank house. An Irish archbishop tells him that Flora Shaw, a Dubliner, gave Nigeria its name (after ``Niger-area''). Foreign workers in West Germany ``have no civil rights'' and ``do not officially exist.'' Customs officers in Norway hassle him at the airport. Phillips's findings are not especially new, but his eyes are sensitive and his pen is sharp. He deserves better editing. First serial to the New York Times Book Review. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/01/1987 Release date: 05/01/1987 Genre: Nonfiction
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