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2 Burnside Anthologies- International

Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing

by

Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing Cover

 

Review-A-Day

"One would do well to read this book because: a) Africa is larger than the United States, Europe, and China combined, and in our interdependent, globalized world, Africa's problems are our problems; b) African writing is, as Spillman argues in his introduction, entering a golden age due to a host of factors including rapid urbanization and expanding educational and economic opportunities, and is thereby 'ready for the international spotlight'; and c) these stories are really, really good." Paul Charles Griffin, The Brooklyn Rail (read the entire Brooklyn Rail review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A one-of-a-kind collection showcasing the energy of new African literature

Coming at a time when Africa and African writers are in the midst of a remarkable renaissance, Gods and Soldiers captures the vitality and urgency of African writing today. With stories from northern Arabic-speaking to southern Zulu-speaking writers, this collection conveys thirty different ways of approaching what it means to be African. Whether about life in the new urban melting pots of Cape Town and Luanda, or amid the battlefield chaos of Zimbabwe and Somalia, or set in the imaginary surreal landscapes born out of the oral storytelling tradition, these stories represent a striking cross section of extraordinary writing. Including works by J. M. Coetzee, Chimamanda Adichie, Nuruddin Farah, Binyavanga Wainaina, and Chinua Achebe, and edited by Rob Spillman of Tin House magazine, Gods and Soldiers features many pieces never before published, making it a vibrant and essential glimpse of Africa as it enters the twenty-first century.

Review:

"Spillman, editor and cofounder of lit journal Tin House, brings together a diaspora full of urgency and possibility, featuring recent fiction and nonfiction (mostly fiction) from 30 African authors. First up is Chinua Achebe, author of the groundbreaking Things Fall Apart, looking at North African writers often excluded from the canon, reminding readers that Africa is far from homogeneous (entries come translated from Arabic, Zulu, French and other languages). Each piece finds a human story to illuminate the continent's history of plight and promise, turning up a range of voices: Helon Habila's breathtaking tale of a political prisoner forced to write poems for the prison superintendent's girlfriend; a scene from Ngugi wa Thong'o's novel Wizard of the Crow depicting an Orwellian celebration for an unnamed ruler; Patrice Nganang's essay 'The Senghor Complex' examining the influence of poet Lopold Senghor, Senegal's first president ('[for] writers of my generation,' he's 'everyone's grandfather'). This collection sheds light on a multifarious continent too often thought of in one-size-fits-all terms." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

About the Author

Rob Spillman is editor and cofounder of Tin House, a bicoastal literary magazine, executive editor of Tin House Books, and cofounder of the Tin House Literary Festival. His writing has appeared in The New York Times Book Review, Rolling Stone, and Salon, among others.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction by Rob Spillman

Map of Africa

West Africa

Nonfiction

Chinua Achebe ♦ Nigeria

"The African Writer and the English Language"

Fiction

Helon Habila ♦ Nigeria

"Lomba"

Mohammed Naseehu Ali ♦ Ghana

"The Manhood Test"

Chris Abani ♦ Nigeria

from Becoming Abigail

E. C. Osondu ♦ Nigeria

"Voice of America"

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie ♦ Nigeria

from Half of a Yelllow Sun

Francophone Africa

Nonfiction

Patrice Nganang ♦ Cameroon

"The Senghor Complex"

Fiction

Alain Mabanckou ♦Republic of Congo

from Broken Glass

Fatou Diome ♦ Senegal

from The Belly of the Atlantic

Boubacar Boris Diop ♦ Senegal

from Murambi, The Book of Bones

North Africa

Nonfiction

Laila Lalami ♦ Morocco

"The Politics of Reading"

Fiction

Nawal El Saadawi ♦ Egypt

from Woman at Point Zero

Mohamed Magani ♦ Algeria

from The Butcher's Aesthetic

Aziz Chouaki ♦ Algeria

from The Star of Algiers

Leila Aboulela ♦ Sudan

"Souvenirs"

East Africa

Nonfiction

Binyavanga Wainaina ♦ Kenya

from Discovering Home

Fiction

Ngugi wa Thiong'o ♦ Kenya

from Wizard of the Crow

Doreen Baingana ♦ Uganda

"Christianity Killed the Cat"

Nuruddin Farah ♦ Somalia

from Knots

Abdourahman A. Waberi ♦ Djibouti

from The United States of Africa

Former Portuguese Colonies

Nonfiction

Mia Couto ♦ Mozambique

"Languages We Don't Know We Know"

Fiction

Ondjaki ♦ Angola

"Dragonfly"

Jose Eduardo Agualusa ♦ Angola

from The Book of Chameleons

Southern Africa

Nonfiction

J. M. Coetzee ♦ South Africa

"The Memoirs of Breyten Breytenbach"

Fiction

Yvonne Vera ♦ Zimbabwe

"Dead Swimmers"

Niq Mhlongo ♦ South Africa

from Dog Eat Dog

Nadine Gordimer ♦ South Africa

"A Beneficiary"

Marlene van Niekerk ♦ South Africa

from Agaat

Zakes Mda ♦ South Africa

from Ways of Dying

Ivan Vladislavic ♦ South Africa

"The WHITES ONLY Bench"

Biographical Notes

Product Details

ISBN:
9780143114734
Author:
Spillman, Rob
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Subject:
Translations into english
Subject:
20th century
Subject:
Rhetoric
Subject:
African
Subject:
African literature -- 20th century.
Subject:
African literature (English) - 20th century
Subject:
Anthologies-African Literature
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Mass Market
Publication Date:
20090431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
8.38x5.46x.84 in. .57 lbs.
Age Level:
17-17

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Related Subjects

Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » African Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » General
Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » International
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing Sale Trade Paper
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$7.98 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Penguin Books - English 9780143114734 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Spillman, editor and cofounder of lit journal Tin House, brings together a diaspora full of urgency and possibility, featuring recent fiction and nonfiction (mostly fiction) from 30 African authors. First up is Chinua Achebe, author of the groundbreaking Things Fall Apart, looking at North African writers often excluded from the canon, reminding readers that Africa is far from homogeneous (entries come translated from Arabic, Zulu, French and other languages). Each piece finds a human story to illuminate the continent's history of plight and promise, turning up a range of voices: Helon Habila's breathtaking tale of a political prisoner forced to write poems for the prison superintendent's girlfriend; a scene from Ngugi wa Thong'o's novel Wizard of the Crow depicting an Orwellian celebration for an unnamed ruler; Patrice Nganang's essay 'The Senghor Complex' examining the influence of poet Lopold Senghor, Senegal's first president ('[for] writers of my generation,' he's 'everyone's grandfather'). This collection sheds light on a multifarious continent too often thought of in one-size-fits-all terms." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review A Day" by , "One would do well to read this book because: a) Africa is larger than the United States, Europe, and China combined, and in our interdependent, globalized world, Africa's problems are our problems; b) African writing is, as Spillman argues in his introduction, entering a golden age due to a host of factors including rapid urbanization and expanding educational and economic opportunities, and is thereby 'ready for the international spotlight'; and c) these stories are really, really good." (read the entire Brooklyn Rail review)
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