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Mathématiques Congolaises

by In koli Jean Bofane

This is my 2nd novel by him having read his book Congo Inc. for a French literature course I took at university. Bofane has a style of writing that is filled with multitude of different characters that speak to different aspects of modern day Congo. Set in Kinshasa the novel follows the political intrigue and corruption of modern life. Characters include an opposition politician, a government soldier as well as the main protagonist, Celio, a young man with a mathematical obsession hustling to climb the social ladder. Bofane has a way of fleshing out what at first glance seem like characters found in any post colonial African city, and creating a narrative that really grips you.


Democratic Republic of Congo is the second largest country on the continent. The country is often called DRC or Congo(Kinshasa) so as not to be confused with the other Congo. DRC is rich in natural resources including diamonds , cobalt and copper.m, and gained independence from Belgium in 1960. However the country has been marred by social and political instability due to oppressive regimes. It is not all doom and gloom there is lots of exciting culture and music coming out of the country including Sapeurism, a subculture of high fashion including dive suits and bow-ties.

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