Sourirada Soutanna, a twice-divorced-soldier-turned-dishwasher-turned diplomat is sent to Ratisan, one of the many countries of the ‘newly freed Fourth World’. Through this seemingly humorous account of his escapades there, the author comments on the world of politics, high-powered multinational and international intrigue. In a series of political and amorous imbroglios, Soutanna discovers that things are rarely what they seem, and that good (does it exist?) rarely triumphs—and finally, that the innate ugliness of the human psyche, if given the proper circumstances, comes to dominate the entire personality, making rats of men.
Colonial rule and the fragmentation of a once-large country into several clone-like ‘independent’ states forms the backdrop to this allegorical tale about countries and peoples, purely fictitious—and yet, all too familiar to the reader.