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My First Coup D'Etat: And Other True Stories from the Lost Decades of Africa

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My First Coup D'Etat: And Other True Stories from the Lost Decades of Africa Cover

ISBN13: 9781608198597
ISBN10: 1608198596
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

MY FIRST COUP D'ETAT is a literary nonfiction account that charts the coming of age of John Dramani Mahama in Ghana during the dismal post-independence "lost decades" of Africa. He was seven years old when rumors of that first coup reached his boarding school in Accra. His father was suddenly missing. "It is sometimes incorrectly referred to in texts as a bloodless coup, yet it was anything but," Mahama writes. "They tried, as best they could, with smiles and toffee, to shield me from their rising anxiety but I could feel it bouncing off the quick sideways glances they shot one another and taking flight like some dark, winged creature." John's father, a Minister of State, was in prison for more than a year.

MY FIRST COUP D'ETAT offers a look at the country that has long been considered Africa's success story--from its founding as the first sub-Saharan nation to gain independence, to its current status as the only nation on the continent to have, thus far, met the majority of targets on hunger, poverty, and education set by the U.N. But these stories work on many levels--as fables, as history, as cultural and political analysis, and of course as the memoir of a young man who, unbeknownst to him or anyone else, is destined to become a leader in his own land. These are stories that rise above their specific settings and transport the reader--much like the stories of Isaac Bashevis Singer and Nadine Gordimer--into a world all their own, one which straddles a time lost and explores the universal human emotions of love, fear, faith, despair, loss, longing, and hope despite all else.

Review:

"Though the colonies of sub-Saharan Africa began to claim independence in the late 1950s and '60s, autocratic and capricious leadership soon caused initial hope to fade, and Africa descended into its 'lost decades,' a period of stagnation and despondency from which much of the continent has yet to recover. Mahama, vice president of the Republic of Ghana, grew up alongside his nascent country and experienced this roller-coaster of fortunes. In this memoir, Mahama, the son of a member of parliament, recounts how affairs of state became real in his young mind on the day in 1966 when no one came to collect him from boarding school — the government had been overthrown, his father arrested, and his house confiscated. In fluid, unpretentious style, Mahama unspools Ghana's recent history via entertaining and enlightening personal anecdotes: spying on his uncle impersonating a deity in order to cajole offerings of soup from the villagers hints at the power of religion; discussions with his schoolmates about confronting a bully form the nucleus of his political awakening. As he writes: 'The key to Africa's survival has always been... in the story of its people, the paradoxical simplicity and complexity of our lives.' The book draws to a close as the author's professional life begins, and one suspects the most interesting chapters have yet to be written. Agent: Emma Sweeney, Emma Sweeney Agency. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

From the Vice President of Ghana, a coming-of-age memoir in the form of fable-like tales of the little-written-about post-colonial years in the country widely hailed as Africa's success story-- and of the burgeoning political consciousness of a young man destined to become a leader in his land. "They brim with humanity." --Andrew Solomon

Synopsis:

From the President of Ghana, a coming-of-age memoir about the little-written-about post-colonial years in the country widely hailed as Africa's success story--"a much welcome work of immense relevance."--Chinua Achebe

Synopsis:

My First Coup d'Etat chronicles the coming-of-age of John Dramani Mahama in Ghana during the dismal post-independence "lost decades" of Africa. He was seven years old when rumors of a coup reached his boarding school in Accra. His father, a minister of state, was imprisoned for more than a year.

My First Coup d'Etat offers an intimate look at the country that has long been considered Africa's success story. This is a one-of-a-kind book: Mahama's is a rare literary voice from a political leader, and his personal stories work on many levels--as history, as cultural and political analysis, as fables, and, of course, as the memoir of a young man who unbeknownst to him or anything else, would grow up to be president of his nation. Though nonfiction, these are stories that rise above their specific settings and transport the reader into a world all their own, one that evokes the universal human emotions of love, fear, faith, despair, loss, longing, and hope despite all else.

Synopsis:

My First Coup D'Etat chronicles the coming-of-age of John Dramani Mahama in Ghana during the dismal post-independence "lost decades" of Africa. He was seven years old when rumors of a coup reached his boarding school in Accra. His father, a minister of state, was imprisoned for more than a year.  My First Coup D'Etat offers an intimate look at the country that has long been considered Africa's success story. This is a one-of-a-kind book: Mahama's is a rare literary voice from a political leader, and his personal stories work on many levels--as history, as cultural and political analysis, as fables, and, of course, as the memoir of a young man who, unbeknownst to him or anyone else, would grow up to be vice president of his nation. Though non-fiction, these are stories that rise above their specific settings and transport the reader into a world all their own, one which evokes a time lost and explores the universal human emotions of love, fear, faith, despair, loss, longing, and hope despite all else.

About the Author

John Dramani Mahama is a writer, historian, journalist, former member of Parliament and minister of state, and sitting president of the Republic of Ghana. This is his first book. He lives in Accra with his family and is currently at work on his second book.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

jwlang, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by jwlang)
Great Book in 2012. The VP of Ghana writes his easily read and followed autobiography. Now I know more about the man who become President just days after the book's release at the untimely death of the President.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781608198597
Author:
Mahama, John Dramani
Publisher:
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Subject:
Presidents
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Biography-Presidents and Heads of State
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20120731
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » General
Biography » General
Biography » Presidents and Heads of State
Education » Writing
Featured Titles » Biography
History and Social Science » Africa » Ghana
History and Social Science » World History » Africa
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

My First Coup D'Etat: And Other True Stories from the Lost Decades of Africa Used Hardcover
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$17.50 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Bloomsbury Publishing PLC - English 9781608198597 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Though the colonies of sub-Saharan Africa began to claim independence in the late 1950s and '60s, autocratic and capricious leadership soon caused initial hope to fade, and Africa descended into its 'lost decades,' a period of stagnation and despondency from which much of the continent has yet to recover. Mahama, vice president of the Republic of Ghana, grew up alongside his nascent country and experienced this roller-coaster of fortunes. In this memoir, Mahama, the son of a member of parliament, recounts how affairs of state became real in his young mind on the day in 1966 when no one came to collect him from boarding school — the government had been overthrown, his father arrested, and his house confiscated. In fluid, unpretentious style, Mahama unspools Ghana's recent history via entertaining and enlightening personal anecdotes: spying on his uncle impersonating a deity in order to cajole offerings of soup from the villagers hints at the power of religion; discussions with his schoolmates about confronting a bully form the nucleus of his political awakening. As he writes: 'The key to Africa's survival has always been... in the story of its people, the paradoxical simplicity and complexity of our lives.' The book draws to a close as the author's professional life begins, and one suspects the most interesting chapters have yet to be written. Agent: Emma Sweeney, Emma Sweeney Agency. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
From the Vice President of Ghana, a coming-of-age memoir in the form of fable-like tales of the little-written-about post-colonial years in the country widely hailed as Africa's success story-- and of the burgeoning political consciousness of a young man destined to become a leader in his land. "They brim with humanity." --Andrew Solomon
"Synopsis" by , From the President of Ghana, a coming-of-age memoir about the little-written-about post-colonial years in the country widely hailed as Africa's success story--"a much welcome work of immense relevance."--Chinua Achebe
"Synopsis" by , My First Coup d'Etat chronicles the coming-of-age of John Dramani Mahama in Ghana during the dismal post-independence "lost decades" of Africa. He was seven years old when rumors of a coup reached his boarding school in Accra. His father, a minister of state, was imprisoned for more than a year.

My First Coup d'Etat offers an intimate look at the country that has long been considered Africa's success story. This is a one-of-a-kind book: Mahama's is a rare literary voice from a political leader, and his personal stories work on many levels--as history, as cultural and political analysis, as fables, and, of course, as the memoir of a young man who unbeknownst to him or anything else, would grow up to be president of his nation. Though nonfiction, these are stories that rise above their specific settings and transport the reader into a world all their own, one that evokes the universal human emotions of love, fear, faith, despair, loss, longing, and hope despite all else.

"Synopsis" by ,
My First Coup D'Etat chronicles the coming-of-age of John Dramani Mahama in Ghana during the dismal post-independence "lost decades" of Africa. He was seven years old when rumors of a coup reached his boarding school in Accra. His father, a minister of state, was imprisoned for more than a year.  My First Coup D'Etat offers an intimate look at the country that has long been considered Africa's success story. This is a one-of-a-kind book: Mahama's is a rare literary voice from a political leader, and his personal stories work on many levels--as history, as cultural and political analysis, as fables, and, of course, as the memoir of a young man who, unbeknownst to him or anyone else, would grow up to be vice president of his nation. Though non-fiction, these are stories that rise above their specific settings and transport the reader into a world all their own, one which evokes a time lost and explores the universal human emotions of love, fear, faith, despair, loss, longing, and hope despite all else.
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