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I Refuse to Die: My Journey for Freedomby Kerry Kennedy Cuomo
Synopses & Reviews
An extraordinary account of how a laborer's son rose to challenge the power of despots, I Refuse to Die is both the autobiography of one gifted man who rose above the horrors of colonization, and an uncensoredhistory of modern Kenya. The book is infused with the freedom songs of the Kenyan people, as well as dream prophecy and folk tales that are part of Kenya's rich storytelling tradition. Tracing the roots of the Mau Maurebellion, wa Wamwere follows the evolution and degeneration of Jomo Kenyatta and the rise of Daniel arap Moi.
In 1979, wa Wamwere won a seat in the parliament, where he represented the economically depressedNakuru district for three years. An outspoken activist and journalist, wa Wamwere was framed and detained on three separate instances, spending thirteen years in prison, where he was tortured but not broken. His mother andothers led a hunger strike to free him and fellow political prisoners. Their efforts brought about a show trial at which Koigi was sentenced to four more years in prison and six strokes of the cane, and escapedKenya-and probably execution--only through the exertions of human rights groups and the government of Norway.
"It is difficult to complete I Refuse to Die without admiring Koigi’s selflessness and courage."—The Washington Post
I Refuse to Die: My Journey for Freedom, an autobiography, is an extraordinary account of how a laborer’s son rose to challenge the power of despots. Following publication of the book in October, 2002, wa Wamwere won reelection to the Kenyan Parliament, and returned to his homeland. The book is infused with the freedom songs of the Kenyan people, as well as revealing allegories born of a rich storytelling tradition.
Koigi wa Wamwere is the author of Negative Ethnicity and Democracy Under Siege.
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Biography » General