In his book King Leopold’s Ghost, Adam Hochschild describes the stretch of the Congo River as it approaches the sea: Much of the Congo River basin, we now know, lies on a plateau in the African interior.
While Casement in all his complexity might indeed ‘deserve the honours of a great novel’, that very complexity, as it has been argued about in the last decade or so, could itself be a useful theme for a novel. Casement was a fanatical Irish nationalist who left Ireland at the age of 16 and spent very little time in the country again. He dreamed about Ireland when he worked as a British diplomat and the more he dreamed the more passionate he became about Irish freedom and the revival of the Irish language. He worked to help colonise the Congo, implicating himself in the very activity of which he later became a formidable and public enemy. He was an energetic and meticulous campaigner against the abuse of the native population of the Congo and the Amazon Basin;