This masterly biography examines the fascinating and contradictory career of Roger Casement, one of the most controversial figures of the last century.
Roger Casement was brought up as a Protestant in Dublin and began his extraordinary career as on of Stanley's volunteers in the Congo Free State. During his time in Africa, he exposed King Leopold's exploitation of the natives and went on to reveal the ruthlessness of the British in South America, for which he received a knighthood.
In Germany after the outbreak of the First World War he claimed Ireland's right to recognition to independent nationhood; he returned to Ireland in 1916 in a U-boat, was captured, taken to London, tried and hanged as a traitor. To further blacken his name the British government released what purported to be his diaries, which demonstrated that he had been a practising homosexual. Controversy still rages today as to whether or not these were forgeries.