Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing

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Isbn Laila Lalami Morocco : The politics of reading -- Fiction. Binyavanga Wainaina Kenya : from Discovering home -- Fiction. Mia Couto Mozambique : "Languages we don't know we know" -- Fiction.


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Gods and Soldiers

Link Analysis Experimental. After surveying various African writers of his own era, and considering the work of non-Africans Jorge Amado Brazil and James Baldwin, Achebe concludes:. Forty-four years later, Gods and Soldiers offers evidence that this generation is working through similar issues, and that many are reaching similar conclusions.

Both among the writers who work in English and those whose work is presented in translation, there is a palpable sense of discovery and invention, as they transcend genre and convention to tell their uniquely African stories.

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The collection is organized roughly by region west, north, east and southern Africa, plus breakouts for French- and Portuguese-speaking countries , with a non-fiction essay setting the tone for each section. In that respect, the structure helps underscore that there is boundless diversity in every respect from one end of Africa to the other. One of the revelations in reading Gods and Soldiers is seeing how writers from country to country grapple in their individual ways with these various themes and storylines.

The broad topic of governance and political affairs on the continent, not surprisingly, is one of those themes. In Somalia, Nuriddin Farah introduces us to a female freedom fighter overseeing a group of green, skeptical young charges. Osundu, the relationship depicted is of a young, star-struck African idolizing a figure from afar.

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Elsewhere, Leila Aboulela writes of a young man with one foot in his native Sudan and another with his wife in Scotland, and trying to navigate the emotional distance between those two worlds and his loved ones in them. Waberi puts a sardonic spin on Africa-as-woebegotten-charity-case, speculating about a world in which Zurich held the highest rate of AIDS infections and African leaders were making broad pronouncements about the hoards of impoverished, starving Japanese. Ultimately, this is a collection of, by and about modern Africa, of writers and characters negotiating their way through timeworn realities and new possibilities.

The concluding selection, a short story by Ivan Vladislavic, shows how difficult that negotiation can be, as a discarded piece created for a South African museum exhibit bears the power to elicit reactions based on age-old, discredited power dynamics. Continuing our celebration of PopMatters' 20th anniversary, we revisit our 10 picks for the best debut albums of It turns out our selections were prescient as many of these artists have gone on to storied careers.


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Travel back to and see them again for the first time. PopMatters turns 20 years old this October and we're beginning to celebrate our history by taking you back in time a decade ago. Obama was in the White House and the musical times were very good indeed. Revisit through its best albums.

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Electronic rockers Swoll craft a powerful song in "Shudder to Think" that moves beyond boundaries. M83's follow-up to 's ambient collection Digital Shades Vol. A rewarding, enriching and outstanding collaboration between Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, Bryce Dessner, and Eighth Blackbird makes the old sound new, the new sound old and shines a light on a long lost minimalist composer. Ad Astra has the astronomical humanism of Interstellar mixed with the morose nihilism of Apocalypse Now , fueled by a booster rocket of daddy issues.

The Book of Traps and Lessons reveals Kate Tempest's disdain with contemporary society while also envisioning a future where it all can be changed.

With a flair for hip-hop laced with Marxism, the album is poetic artistry. Signed to Vince Clarke's Very Records, Brook's electropop debut is a rich mix of taut electronics and captivating vocals. Folk poppers Firewoodisland deliver peak chamber pop with the gorgeously arranged and performed ode, "Hollow Coves".

diemacophasa.ml Connor Willumsen keeps the narrative in his graphic fiction book, Bradley of Him, as lean and off-balance as his maybe-deranged main character. Slayyyter's debut mixtape suggests not only nostalgia for, but an intrinsic value in, a long-dead version of celebrity in which artists needn't make statements to achieve icon status.