Great African Reads discussion

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Contemporary Lit | Planning > Contemporary: Biography & Memoir (Sep 2012)

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message 1: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Please suggest books for this genre. Remember that the author must be African. Setting does not matter.


message 2: by Addy (new)

Addy | 6 comments How about Looking for Transwonderland by Noo Saro-Wiwa? It came out this year and it's part memoir part travel writing (Nigeria).


message 4: by Tinea, Former Special Project Leader (last edited Sep 11, 2012 03:09PM) (new)


message 5: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Great suggestions! We'll have to keep and eye out for the Achebe memoir publication so we can plan accordingly and in case it gets picked in the poll.

Looking for Transwonderland: Travels in Nigeria is an excellent suggestion, Adlyn, and i might read it ASAP. That's really great to see Ken Saro-Wiwa's daughter writing. :)


message 6: by Katy (new)

Katy | 81 comments Against the Grain: Memoirs of a Zimbabwean Newsman by Geoffrey Nyarota (ISBN 9781770071124)

When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa by Peter Godwin (SBN 9780316018715)


message 7: by Beverly (new)

Beverly | 541 comments Adlyn wrote: "How about Looking for Transwonderland by Noo Saro-Wiwa? It came out this year and it's part memoir part travel writing (Nigeria)."

I was going to add Transwonderland to the Narrative Nonfiction group as while it is memoir/travel writing - we have many memoir/bio suggestions and less in the narrartive nonfiction group (especially with travel writing)


message 8: by Beverly (new)

Beverly | 541 comments There Was a Country - Chinua Achebe (Oct 2012)

My First Coup d'Etati:And Other True Storeis from the Lost Decades of Africa - John Dramani Mahama


message 9: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
i just started Transwonderland. I just couldn't resist!

i have this biography to suggest: Ben Enwonwu: The Making of an African Modernist.


message 10: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Hi everyone!

i know i'm late doing this but i want to set up a poll for this genre. We will be choosing a selection for Februrary. Does anyone have any more titles to add?


message 11: by Manu (new)

Manu (manuherb) | 161 comments 1. John Dramani Mahama (President of Ghana and member of the Ghana Association of Writers): My First Coup d'Etat.

2.Philip Tobias: Into the Past


message 12: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Thank you Manu!


message 13: by Fela (new)

Fela | 23 comments Dreams in the time of war - ngugi wa thiongo


message 14: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Thank you, Fela!

I'm going to post the poll tonight so please leave your suggestions here today. (It's 10am my time)


message 15: by Geoff (new)

Geoff Wisner (geoffwisner) | 6 comments * One Day I Will Write About This Place—Binyavanga Wainaina
* The Worlds of a Maasai Warrior—Tepilit Ole Saitoti
* Nisa: The Life and Words of a !Kung Woman—as told to Marjorie Shostak
* Mafeking Diary—Sol T. Plaatje.

I hope this month's reading will interest some of you in my new anthology African Lives (coming out in March)! http://bit.ly/LaDhtl


message 16: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Great! thanks everyone!

because we have so many options, i'm going to randomize the list and take just five for the poll.


message 17: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
And here are the top five after randomizing:

Mafeking Diary—Sol T. Plaatje.
One Day I Will Write About This Place: A Memoir
Dreams in the Time of War
A Long Way Gone
When a Crocodile Eats the Sun


message 18: by Katy (new)

Katy | 81 comments Except, if I may correct you, it's Mafikeng Diary, not Mafeking...


message 19: by sarah (new)

sarah louise (s_l_p) | 3 comments oh my. this is a great thread for me right now. I am trying to put together a (world lit) syllabus that includes non-fiction, which is my least-read-genre...memoir is definitely an important aspect of non-fiction.

is anyone familiar also with shorter essays, or collections?


message 20: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (last edited Jan 10, 2013 05:02PM) (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
sarah wrote: "oh my. this is a great thread for me right now. I am trying to put together a (world lit) syllabus that includes non-fiction, which is my least-read-genre...memoir is definitely an important aspe..."

if you can wait until March, Geoff's anthology is coming out (see his link at the end of post 15) :)

ETA: sorry, did you mean non-biography essays?


message 21: by Beverly (new)

Beverly | 541 comments Katy wrote: "Except, if I may correct you, it's Mafikeng Diary, not Mafeking..."

I think it may be a translation issue - it is listed on Amazon US as Mafeking Diary if it is the same book (actually quite pricey)


message 22: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Sarah, have you checked How to Write about Africa?


message 23: by Katy (new)

Katy | 81 comments Beverly wrote: "Katy wrote: "Except, if I may correct you, it's Mafikeng Diary, not Mafeking..."

I think it may be a translation issue - it is listed on Amazon US as Mafeking Diary if it is the same book (actuall..."


That's interesting. In South Africa, I always saw it spelled as Mafikeng.


message 24: by sarah (new)

sarah louise (s_l_p) | 3 comments Marieke wrote: "Sarah, have you checked How to Write about Africa?"

Marieke, I haven't, and that looks both great, and maybe right on...I will definitely take a look at it. thanks!


message 25: by Geoffrey (new)

Geoffrey Wisner | 1 comments Around 1900, when Plaatje was writing, the town was spelled Mafeking. It was renamed Mafikeng in 1980 and Mahikeng in 2010, though most still call it Mafikeng.


message 26: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
One Day I Will Write About This Place: A Memoir will be our February selection!


message 27: by Beverly (new)

Beverly | 541 comments Marieke wrote: "One Day I Will Write About This Place: A Memoir will be our February selection!"

thanks


message 28: by Geoff (new)

Geoff Wisner (geoffwisner) | 6 comments Great choice! I've read it (and reviewed it) but look forward to opening it again.


message 29: by Andrea (new)

Andrea | 658 comments I will definitely be joining the February read. I've read that book once already, but I would love to get some new insights into it. Also, have a small plane trip coming up in February (over a weekend when I shouldn't have any grading!) so I'll actually have time to read it!


message 30: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Andrea wrote: "I will definitely be joining the February read. I've read that book once already, but I would love to get some new insights into it. Also, have a small plane trip coming up in February (over a we..."

excellent!

i'm excited to read it, too. and i'm glad we will have people discussing who have read it before.


message 31: by Friederike (new)

Friederike Knabe (fknabe) | 162 comments Good choice for February. I also read the book once and it will motivate me to look at it again.


message 32: by Beverly (new)

Beverly | 541 comments I am planning to start the Feb BOM - "One Day I Will Write About This Place" - this weekend.

Is anyone else reading?


message 33: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
I will definitely be reading it. I own it and I'm excited for it!


message 34: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
That reminds me...did I set up a discussion thread yet? :/

I'm on my phone, I'll check at lunchtime.


message 35: by Muphyn (new)

Muphyn | 816 comments Yes, I'll be reading it too (once I manage to get myself to the library and borrow it!).


message 36: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
I totally forgot to check at lunchtime. Crazy day!

Soon I'll be home...

Go to the library, Muph! ;)


message 37: by Muphyn (last edited Feb 05, 2013 02:46PM) (new)

Muphyn | 816 comments I KNOW!!! :) Hopefully I'll manage it tonight!


message 38: by Chinook (new)

Chinook Sadly, I didn't get a copy of this one.


message 39: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Chinook wrote: "Sadly, I didn't get a copy of this one."

:(


message 40: by Anne (new)

Anne (annehako) | 8 comments I will be reading 'one day a will write about this place' too.


message 41: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Anne wrote: "I will be reading 'one day a will write about this place' too."

wonderful!

i finally opened a thread for discussing it! i'm really very sorry for the delay. i don't know why February is speeding by like this.


message 42: by Muphyn (new)

Muphyn | 816 comments And it's a short month, that always gets me! By the time I've managed to get the book out (I know, I know, go to the library says Marieke! ;) ), it'll be March... :(


message 43: by Marieke, Former guide & Chief Chatterbox (new)

Marieke | 2838 comments Mod
Heehee...the discussion can certainly continue after February. I will set up the sci-fi poll tomorrow. Or maybe even tonight.


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