Description : After decades of British rule Kenya has declared its independence, but drought and poor harvests still govern the village of Ilmorog. Undeterred, Munira, Karega, Wanja and Abdulla each move to Ilmorog in search of a more provincial life, only to find themselves suspects in a crime that signals a dark turning of the times. A classic of modern African literature, Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s damning satire of politics and corruption in Kenya would prove the catalyst for his imprisonment by the Kenyan government.
Description : The puzzling murder of three African directors of a foreign-owned brewery sets the scene for this fervent, hard-hitting novel about disillusionment in independent Kenya. A deceptively simple tale, Petals of Blood is on the surface a suspenseful investigation of a spectacular triple murder in upcountry Kenya. Yet as the intertwined stories of the four suspects unfold, a devastating picture emerges of a modern third-world nation whose frustrated people feel their leaders have failed them time after time. First published in 1977, this novel was so explosive that its author was imprisoned without charges by the Kenyan government. His incarceration was so shocking that newspapers around the world called attention to the case, and protests were raised by human- rights groups, scholars, and writers, including James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Donald Barthelme, Harold Pinter, and Margaret Drabble.
Description : Inspired by the work of Ngugi wa Thiong'o, this collection of twelve essays and two interviews surveys the wide variety of Ngugi's work from his earliest writings to his most recent - including essays, all his novels, and his writings for children. Also included are extensive discussions of Ngugi's writings in English and Gikuyu, his use of oral literary techniques, his tragic exile, and his revolutionary politics.
Description : Ngugi Wa Thiong'o is one of the most important contemporary world writers--his name has for many become synonymous with cultural controversy and political struggle. Patrick William's lucid analysis offers the most up-to-date study of Ngugi's writing, including his most recent collections of essays. Focusing on important aspects of Ngugi's more obscure works, and drawing on a wide range of relevant theoretical perspectives, this study examines the growing complexity of Ngugi's accounts of the history of colonized and postcolonial Kenya.
Description : This is the first comprehensive book-length study of gender politics in Ngugi wa Thiong'o's fiction. Brendon Nicholls argues that mechanisms of gender subordination are strategically crucial to Ngugi's ideological project from his first novel to his most recent one. Nicholls describes the historical pressures that lead Ngugi to represent women as he does, and shows that the novels themselves are symptomatic of the cultural conditions that they address. Reading Ngugi's fiction in terms of its Gikuyu allusions and references, a gendered narrative of history emerges that creates transgressive spaces for women. Nicholls bases his discussion on moments during the Mau Mau rebellion when women's contributions to the anticolonial struggle could not be reduced to a patriarchal narrative of Kenyan history, and this interpretive maneuver permits a reading of Ngugi's fiction that accommodates female political and sexual agency. Nicholls contributes to postcolonial theory by proposing a methodology for reading cultural difference. This methodology critiques cultural practices like clitoridectomy in an ethical manner that seeks to avoid both cultural imperialism and cultural relativisim. His strategy of 'performative reading,' that is, making the conditions of one text (such as folklore, history, or translation) active in another (for example, fiction, literary narrative, or nationalism), makes possible an ethical reading of gender and of the conditions of reading in translation.
Description : The roles of Africans have changed over time in detective/mystery fiction, reflecting their changing real roles in the continent. These studies provide an entertaining way to follow that changed reality.
Description : This work examines both the emergence of African literature and its institutionalization within nationalist African academies. Amoko analyzes the relationship between such institutions of literature and the processes of nationalist legitimization and between colonial and postcolonial school cultures and national cultures.
Description : A study of the works of Kenyan dramatist and novelist Ngugu wa Thiong'o explores the development of his major novels and plays against a background of colonialsim and its aftermath in Kenya.