Dr. Ayittey has
authored many books, but the book that brought
him this honor was "Africa Unchained: The
Blueprint for Africa's future."
The two other
professors on the list were Dr. Margaret Smith; for her book "Reckoning with the Past:
Teaching History in Northern Ireland. And Dr. David Pike; for his
work "Subterranean Cities: The World Beneath Paris and
London 1800 - 1945."
Scholarship" program, set up by the university to honor
authors within the faculty, has been in
existence since 1996. Eighty authors have
been honored so far. These year's
recipients were introduced individually by
introductory address, Ms. Diana L Vogelsong, acting university
librarian, described all the books by the three authors as
having a common thread which dealt with societal change.
She said, "The books
we honor today are based in three separate
locales and cover very different terrain, but
they all touch on factors that affect societal
change and how the past informs the present and
future of those places."
The authors, individually, had the
opportunity to expand on the subject matter of their books.
Dr. Ayittey, it appeared, had been working
on the theme of "Africa Unchained" for 20 years before
According to him, the idea started as a thesis project for his
doctorate degree. All he had wanted to say then was that
"African leaders have failed Africa." But because
of attitude in the
early 80s, when political correctness prevented such statements
from being made, his theme was to remain unpublished until his
first book, "Africa betrayed."
Dr. George Ayittey
is also the founder and president of Free Africa
Foundation, a not-for-profit activist
organization for African affairs which is
currently based in Washington, D.C. He has
authored many books and written articles for
many publications worldwide.
George and a
well-wisher, Dick Wright, in front of the library