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Ry The New York Review of Books is Kapuscinski's rendition of their accounts humorous frightening sad grotesue of a man living amidst nearly unimaginable pomp and luxury while his people teetered between hunger and starvatio My favorite books by Kapuscinski are those where the author travels and explains for the wo Rebound Roommate (Men of Lake Tahoe Series, sad grotesue of a man living amidst nearly unimaginable pomp and luxury while his people teetered between hunger and Cure for the Loneliness starvatio My favorite books by Kapuscinski are those where the author travels and explains for the wo

DOWNLOAD Cesarz By Ryszard Kapuściński

Cesarz By Ryszard Kapuściński

Haile Selassie King of Kings Elect of God Lion of Judah His Most Puissant Majesty and Distinguished Highness the Emperor of Ethiopia reigned from 1930 until he was overthrown by the army in 1974 While the fighting still rage The author is a Polish journalist and in this book he Chronicles the downfall of Haile Sela Release (Off Balance, still rage The author is a Polish journalist and in this book he Chronicles the downfall of Haile Sela


D Ryszard Kapuscinski Poland's leading foreign correspondent traveled to Ethiopia to seek out and interview Selassie's servants and closest associates on how the Emperor had ruled and why he fell This sensitive powerfulhisto From the waning Gomulka regime forward Kapuscinski fashioned a journalistic career out of e

10 thoughts on “Cesarz By Ryszard Kapuściński

  1. says:

    The author is a Polish journalist and in this book he Chronicles the downfall of Haile Selassie the longtime ruler of Ethiopia The book is divided into three sections and in the first he interviews those who worked in the palace There is some tongue in cheek humor here as we learn many of the jobs they did and took do seriously were uite strangea human cuckoo whose only job was to bow on the hour a functionary with a collection of pillows so he could be sure to use the correct size to prop of the feet of the emperor Much stuggling for positions favor who is closest who did he speak to the most? Everything revolved around his majesty nothing could be fixed built without his approvalThe second section Chronicles the failed revolution which forms at a fashion show of all things Many were killed their bodies displayed as a warning It would be another ten years before his actual downfall which is chronicled in the third act Brought about because of the emperors lack of knowledge about the many starving in the northern parts of the country This was brought to national attention Remember feed the world with so many well known musicians The dead and dying bodies on our news shows? A short book which is actually an allegorical rendering of Selassies ousting since it would be a full two years after this was published that the autocrat falls A short book a series of interviews with various personages with insertions by the author A very different reading experienceAlso im trying to give this book three stars and Goodreads won't let me I keep tapping on clear and it just gives me back the same four stars So frustrating

  2. says:

    A 35 star rating perhaps This book contains accounts from those close to Ethiopia’s last emperor Haile Selassie It chronicles Selassie’s opulent lifestyle and his subseuent downfall It speaks to the undoing of African leaders I’ve always been intrigued by Selassie and was interested to know about himThe Emperor is a very dramatic account of Selassie's and I did get a slightly clearer idea of who Selassie was He was very progressive in many ways and he was uite eccentric as well Overall he was painted as uite the despot in this book something I’d never really heard been said about himKapuscinski managed to interview those close to the emperor albeit anonymously and put their thoughts into this book However the accounts sounded a bit too fictional to me That’s not necessarily bad but I was looking for something substantial and something that didn’t sound so one sidedI also felt that the book didn’t have a logical start; I expected everything to go chronologically from start to finish Perhaps this is my own error for having a wrong idea about what this book was trying to doIn my opinion Kapuscinski is better suited to write short anecdotes and make anthropological observations while on his reporting assignments I’d really enjoyed Kapuscinski’s last book The Shadow of the Sun and had thought this would be just as enjoyable I feel that someone like Emperor Selassie and roads are named after him all around Africa after all is deserving of a factual in depth properly documented account I wanted to know why he is so revered in the Rastafarian community for example but this account didn’t go into thatThis book whetted my appetite for learning about Selassie and Ethiopia It was hard for me to accept the content as the Ethiopian people I know speak highly of Selassie So many uestions not enough answers

  3. says:

    By the Conuering Lion of the Tribe of Judah His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I King of Kings Lord of Lords Elect of God”A sovereign a direct descendant from the ueen of Sheba and the King Salomon of Israel by law decree that isNo wonder such title comes with almighty power –The Bible isn´t very exact on the homeland of said ueen and noting that Solomon allegedly had 700 wives and 300 concubines there would be offspring literally everywhereBut it fits well into the narrative of an old kingdom to trace it´s lineage even longer back and why not use a Biblical reference for the occasion after all the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church has existed since the middle of the fourth century thus giving a blessing to everything that would render a holy shine on the kingdom So The Emperor isn´t just anybody What do you do with such power?There are many views and many sources some reliable than others HS liked progress cars airplanes and to the degree that it didn´t interfere with state interests also education One of the mantras was “You must Develop” but the development stopped right outside the palace and Ethiopia remained largely a feudal state where aristocracy and local notabilities got the better partThere are schools – but the literacy rate is well below 20% and there are hospitals though you would have to prepare yourself well in advance should you need oneAnd of course there is a constitutionThe rich are getting richer and the poor going nowhere except to die from starvationThat is unless you have connections Someone who knows someone in the palace someone you might do a favor and get a little in returnYou would assume this was the chance of a lifetime but ministers and secretaries were replaced at such speed that you should play your cards extremely well to stay on the “favored list” Everyone informs on each other and reports back to The Emperor to display loyalty and to remain in favor – and The Emperor listens nods and takes mental notes All along you get the impression that HS really didn´t care about others as long as the fanbase was at a steady level and showing the splendor of The King of Kings contributed to thisBeing seen in the admiring company of foreign heads of states giving banuets and throwing the remains to the poor – poor because they are lazy – and presenting fireworks to the people out of grandness and goodwill all looks like the final days of the Roman Empire And it is the final days The interviews with palace officials ranking from the “purse bearer” to the “pillow bearer” and upwards mostly show a public accepting fate and adoring The King of Kings a godly creature as infallible as The Holy Pope a man who could do no wrongOnly in the aftermath when the interviews took place some show just a little doubt and humbly suggests that if just His Venerable Highness though he only stood 5 feet 2 had been told by “someone” he would have set everything right The issue of course is that HS very well knew and had absolutely no intention of doing anything that would prove him less infallible hence the many changes in the abundance of ministries always have a scapegoat ready Was HS an evil dictator? Maybe at least he chose with open eyes to enroll in the ranks of the privilege blind and never showed any regrets

  4. says:

    From the waning Gomulka regime forward Kapuscinski fashioned a journalistic career out of exceedingly subtle swipes at the pretenses and tragicomic self deception of Soviet style Communism The Emperor is aimed at Haile Selassie who Kapuscinski paints as a vapid self important ignoramusHow much of this is actually Selassie and how much is carefully picked in order to make fun of Stalin or Khrushchev or even Gomulka is up for debate but that's exactly what makes this book a masterpiece I can't think of a bitter catalog of the pathologies that accompany political power and by the end it doesn't matter all that much who's in the limo surrounded by uislings and sycophants One of the mysteries of this book is whether dictators like Selassie come into being due to good timing canny manipulation or people's gullible belief that they can change their own nature Kapuscinski refuses to take sides on the uestion of which comes first the Hitler or the Reich; he's of a muralist than a satirist which is part of what makes The Emperor so satisfying I can't recommend this book highly enough

  5. says:

    The Emperor baffles any ready description A Polish journalist Ryszard Kapuscinski renders an account of the last schizophrenic years of Ethiopia’s ancient kingdom and the demise of it emperor whose ways are not our ways to say the least Reviews may not suffice to say exactly why or how the book works but I’ll add mine anyway to the others that have noted its mystiue The book's structure takes a straightforward path The author interviews courtiers associates and servants of the Emperor Haile Selassie in the months just after his dethronement Selassie’s reign is recounted in parts each starting with Kapuscinski’s observations about the situation at hand followed by comments from the relevant courtiers to furnish color detail and insight The tapestry woven from these remarks and the writer’s added observations depict an esoteric mindset I’ve often wondered When humans left their tribes to create the world’s first civilizations what were those societies like? I don’t mean the art they created or the decrees of their leaders – I mean did the people think and act like us? The fabric of the story gives us that answer for Ethiopia was just such a place And the answer is a mind boggling no What we find is a land so ancient it’s not even medieval a place where even feudalism would represent progress But make no mistake it is still a fully developed civilization not some savage prehistoric amalgam Kapuscinski knows he has stumbled into something uniue a culture whose primeval foundation neither lends nor refuses itself to any obvious interpretation In this emperor this court and this society a primordial human drama demands its stage Such a provenance makes conclusions or judgments about Ethiopia impossible to categorize The declivities of class and hierarchy within this kingdom exceed anything known to man An antediluvian social stucture showcases the raw exercise of power at its stripped down worst absent any modern guile By design mediocrity trumps merit as a tool to balance power and maintain social order turning the country into a kind of Ayn Rand novel come to life Such an order inevitably clashes with the outside But decisive are the its own internal contradictionsThe several speakers whose contributions build the story relate the details with elegance In these vignettes lie much of the book’s narrative power; the interviewees tell what they know with a delicate economy that page per page conveys detail plot and feeling than any book I can recall Here’s one such description of the increasingly opaue autocracy People seemed unable to control things; things existed and ceased to exist in their own malicious ways slipping through people’s hands Everyone felt helpless before the seemingly magic force by which things autonomously appeared and disappeared and nobody knew how to master or break that force This speaker later accentuates the dissipation gripping Selassie’s final decade Even conversation deteriorated losing its vigor and momentum Conversations started but somehow never seemed to be completed They always reached an invisible but perceptible point beyond which silence fell The silence said Everything is already known and clear but clear in an obscure way known unfathomably dominating by being beyond helping Having confirmed this truth by a moment of silence the conversation changed its direction and moved on to a different subject a trivial second rate second hand subject The elliptical way the speakers tell their stories adds to the book’s kaleidoscopic dazzle Their many points of view make truth a perspectival uest No immediate verdict emerges upon the rule of Ethiopia’s last emperor; his sycophants both attack and defend his rule and they’re right in each case Yet all the while the reader can detect a bigger picture getting lost in the details Under Kapuscinski’s journalistic guidance the gripping reality of this society emerges to recruit one’s sense of the grotesue This regime outclasses modern ones in some ways No violent purges or collective bloodbaths ever occur But the extremes of hierarchy leave the tragic fates of the many to deface a benighted landKapuscinski tells an amazing story amazingly and his journalist’s sense of having discovered an unprecedented subject is dead on right The writing speaks for itself Its object is uniue The story is a spellbinding discovery The Emperor in short has all the ualities of a perfect book You cannot go wrong choosing it to read

  6. says:

    Great historical book describing the mood of the palace in Ethiopia under the rule of Haile Selassie Excellent in its description of mood You actually see the insanity and chaos that Selassie created and nurtured in his palace and metaphorically throughout his country And by the end of the book you understand how the King of Kings was destroyed by the monster he created The style was unlike any book I'd read in the past It was really well done

  7. says:

    A little lesson in the blurred lines between reportage and fiction a detailed account of the fall of Haile Sellasie given by the ministers and servants who once waited upon him Not of course that you'd ever believe these are direct transcriptions of interviews or that Kapuscinski hasn't modified and tailored these accounts as he sees fit unless you believe all of the ministers speak in an identical fantastical ironical language I suppose if you have narrow ideas of what constitutes nonfiction you might find this sort of thing offensive but if you've already signed on to the concept that monkeying with the truth a little is the soul of all narrative fictional or otherwise it's easy to give yourself over to the story provided here Of particular note are the amazing accounts of Sellasie's court pre disillusion and the accounts of the men who propped up the emperor's legs on account of him being short in stature and therefore believed that they were personally responsible for supporting the empire Really though every sentence here is a winner and the level of irony is so delicious it's difficult not to try and extend your lunch break to finish each section Also according to those in the know a winking satire of Communist bureaucratic wrangling Also according to others who are also in the know but don't agree with the first people in the know written as a Marxist propaganda tract to expose the futility of Western sponsored capitalist schemes However will we discern the truth? But from my resolutely non partisan perspective a grand old time indeed

  8. says:

    This book was a gift to me from a friend who is a former Guardian journalist During the Communist era Ryszard Kapuściński was foreign correspondent for the Polish Press Agency and reported on civil wars and revolutions from all over the Third World The introduction by Neal Ascherson reveals that after reporting on the coup of 1974 that destroyed the Abyssinian Empire Kapuściński was approached by his publishers to write a book on it but could not find a way to write it Suddenly he remembered a story someone had told him about the emperor’s dog“It was a small dog a Japanese breed His name was Lulu He was allowed to sleep in the Emperor’s great bed During various ceremonies he would run away from the emperor’s lap and pee on dignitaries’ shoes The august gentlemen were not allowed to flinch or make the slightest gesture when they felt their feet getting wet I had to walk among the dignitaries and wipe the urine from their shoes with a satin cloth This was my job for ten years”Kapuściński realised he had his start and so the book became a portrait of the fall of the Haile Selassie’s empire in the voices of its former courtiers Their accounts are elouent and wonderfully ironic I imagine however that much of this stylistic elegance and powerfully apposite irony has been woven into the accounts by Kapuściński Certainly the structure of the book into three sections “The Throne” “It’s Coming It’s Coming” and “The Collapse” allow the courtiers’ descriptions to move from the ridiculous through the injurious to the appallingly brutal Here is an early one from “The Throne” that stuck in my mind“The masters of ceremony had to use all sorts of stratagems to prevent the Emperor from being embarrassed financially I remember for instance how His Majesty paid the salaries of foreign engineers but showed no inclination to pay our own masons after the construction of the Imperial Palace called Genete Leul These simple masons gathered in front of the Palace they had built and began asking for want was due to them The Supreme Master of Palace Ceremony appeared on the balcony and asked them to move to the rear of the palace where His Magnanimous Highness would shower them with money The delighted crowd went round to the indicated spot which enabled His Supreme Majesty to leave unembarrassed through the front door and go the Old Palace where the court awaited himWriting about “The Throne” reminds me that there is an entertaining section where the courtier describes the Emperor’s carefully planned visits to outlying districts where the district had to “be put in order first” draining the Treasury and imagines the effects of the Emperor not announcing his visit in advance but simply turning up He arrives in an empty field “What can you do? How can you act? Set up the throne and roll out the carpet? That would only make it ridiculous The throne adds dignity only by contrast to the surrounding humility ” Is anyone else thinking of the solitary king on the deserted planet in St Exupéry’s “Le Petit Prince”? Both St Exupéry and Kapuściński spent a lot of time in AfricaThe descriptions multiply of the Emperor’s reliance on informers and the suspicion and fear that dominate an increasingly corrupt and frightened court I happened to mention during lunch with a friend that I was reading this book and she remarked that in 1973 or 1974 she had worked with Haile Selassie’s daughter in law who had had to flee the country It all felt suddenly very near and very recent I had just finished reading Philippa Gregory’s “The White Princess” which describes the court of King Henry VII and it was a bit depressing to think that the descriptions of Haile Selassie’s court were almost identical except that over five hundred years separated the twoKapuściński’s skilful arrangement of the courtiers’ descriptions and comments becomes heartrendingly powerful as we come to the revolts the vicious beating and killing of students and any women or children who happened to be in the way and then the discovery by Jonathan Dimbleby in 1973 of starving hundreds of thousands of Ethiopians which led to international condemnation of the regime and ultimately to its collapse A cruel ‘modus operandi’ emerges from the mouths of the courtiers that hunger keeps a people too weak to rebel The last witness in the book is the Emperor’s old ‘valet de chambre’ whom Kapuściński had great difficulty finding In the last days he would comfort the Emperor by leading him to the chapel where he could not hear the unruly mob and would read to him from the Biblical prophets “They that did feed delicately are desolate in the streets they that were brought up in scarlet embrace dunghills” Powerful imagery; plus ça change moins ça change I hope to read “Shah of Shahs” and “Another Day of Life” by this author

  9. says:

    My favorite books by Kapuscinski are those where the author travels and explains for the world what other peoples feel This is just an original biography It has been contested in its accuracy The protagonist Haile Selassie emperor of Ethiopia is shown as a surreal personality who controlled a populated African country The book tries to introduce you into the history of the man who on the other hand Rastafarians chose as the reincarnation of Jah This is the portrait of a naïve man who transformed his selfishness and power into worship his thorough maintenance of statu uo into genocide We live in a strange world and you might be curious to take a dip into this man's soul I don't believe you will succeed in understanding his soul there's nothing worth understanding But you will get close to the late Emperor of Ethiopia's court

  10. says:

    His Majesty His Venerable Highness His Revered Highness His Peerless Majesty His Most Exalted Majesty Our Distinguished Monarch His Venerable Majesty His Most Virtuous Highness His Distinguished Majesty His Supreme Majesty the King of Kings His Magnanimous Highness the Supreme Benefactor everyone appearing in Mr Kapuściński’s work seems to have a different form of address for Haile Selassie Mr Kapuściński’s excellent work is noteworthy offering us a glimpse into the experiences of Selassie’s entourage right up to his overthrow in 1974 As I read through this account I mused that surely such a dystopian odd ball state could not long survive Umm wrong; Selassie ruled for 44 years which includes those years of Italian intervention where Selassie ruled in exileI’d mark The Emperor down as comedy but for the many murders imprisonments tortures and general sufferings which Selassie orchestrated So that makes it tragedy or comedy tragedy? Polonius’s line in Hamlet comes to mind“The best actors in the world either for tragedy comedy history pastoral pastoral comical historical pastoral tragical historical tragical comical historical pastoral scene individable or poem unlimited ”Yes one of them

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