Out of Africa

Cynthia Hind. UFOs over Africa. Horus House Press, 1997.
A collection of UFO reports from Zimbabwe and South Africa, ranging from lights in the sky to BOLS to abductions. As with much of this literature one is confronted with stories which if they occurred exactly as reported would be very difficult to explain, but which provide precious little evidence for the ETH, which the author seems to favour.

Given Hind's apparent willingness to give people like liar Lazar the benefit of the doubt, I am not sure that we can rely too much on her assessment of character or critical abilities. As Kevin McClure pointed out in his review of The Communion Letters, what we have is the reinterpretation of a wide range of experiences in terms of the UFO mythology. In a number of cases the witnesses themselves originally interpreted the experiences in terms of their own culture. This does not necessarily mean that they did not have access to UFO imagery of one kind or another. These countries are not isolated backwaters, they are very much part of the emerging global civilisation, mediated through the transnational media. One of the cases discussed in this book consists of a school yard encounter in Zimbabwe, in 1994. A mixed race group of children tell of an object and being seen by the school. Their drawings contain several standard grey images. It has taken about 6 years for the image of the Streiber grey to reach Africa from. the USA.

The idea that there parts of the world inhabited by 'simple people' who are completely isolated from the modern world is one that has been anachronistic for years (One recent TV travel show featured Benedict Allen meeting an isolated group of Mongolian herders, complete with their satellite TV) The fact that a Zimbabwean estate worker or a Brazilian maid might tell people with power over them that 'Oh no, have. never heard of men landing on the moon, we are simple folks here' is not altogether convincing. Its just a little too close to what Herr Professor wants to hear. -- Peter Rogerson, from Magonia 66, March 1999.

No comments: