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by Helon Habila
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Short Stories & Anthologies
  • Author:
    Helon Habila
  • ISBN:
    1847082475
  • ISBN13:
    978-1847082473
  • Genre:
  • Publisher:
    Granta Books; 1 edition (May 1, 2012)
  • Pages:
    344 pages
  • Subcategory:
    Short Stories & Anthologies
  • Language:
  • FB2 format
    1953 kb
  • ePUB format
    1774 kb
  • DJVU format
    1292 kb
  • Rating:
    4.3
  • Votes:
    582
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The African short story is a relatively recent expression for writers on the continent, and this anthology excludes some of the more prominent voices, such as Coetzee, Achebe, or Soyinka in favor of including more contemporary authors from further afield.

The African short story is a relatively recent expression for writers on the continent, and this anthology excludes some of the more prominent voices, such as Coetzee, Achebe, or Soyinka in favor of including more contemporary authors from further afield.

Introduction Helon Habila. The Arrangers of Marriage Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Faeries of the Nile Mansoura Ez-Eldin. To put them in perspective, I have also selected a few influential and representative first- and second-generation writers to stand alongside their artistic descendants. My hope is to capture the range and complexity of African short fiction since independence, highlighting the dominant thematic and stylistic shifts over the decades.

A boost to the short story is the Caine Prize for African Writing which originated in 2000.

shortlisted for prizes including the Pen/Open Book Award, Commonwealth Best Book, Africa Region, and the Orion Book Award. Habila's anthology The Granta Book of the African Short Story came out in September 2011

shortlisted for prizes including the Pen/Open Book Award, Commonwealth Best Book, Africa Region, and the Orion Book Award. Habila's anthology The Granta Book of the African Short Story came out in September 2011. Habila is a founding member and currently serves on the advisory board of African Writers Trust, "a non-profit entity which seeks to coordinate and bring together African writers in the Diaspora and writers on the continent to promote sharing of skills and other resources, and to foster knowledge and learning between the two groups.

These are the stories of a new Africa, punchy, self-confident and defiant Other readers will always be interested in your opinion of the books you've read.

These are the stories of a new Africa, punchy, self-confident and defiant. Includes stories by: Rachida El Charni; Henrietta Rose-Innes; George Makana Clarke; Ivan Vladislavik; Mansoura Ez Eldin; Rogerio Mandjate; Aminatta Forna; Igoni Barrett; Patrice Nganang; Leila Aboulela; Petina Gappah; Ala Al-Aswany; Doreen Baingana; EC Osondu. Other readers will always be interested in your opinion of the books you've read. Whether you've loved the book or not, if you give your honest and detailed thoughts then people will find new books that are right for them.

How can you gather together the stories of a continent. Some of the best African writers simply don't write short stories," Habila explains. We’ll tell you what’s true. You can form your own view.

Presenting a diverse and dazzling collection from all over the continent, from Morocco to Zimbabwe, Uganda to Kenya. Helon Habila focuses on younger, newer writers - contrasted with some of their older, more established peers - to give. Helon Habila focuses on younger, newer writers - contrasted with some of their older, more established peers - to give a fascinating picture of a new and more liberated Africa. These writers are characterized by their engagement with the wider world and the opportunities offered by the end of apartheid, the end of civil wars and dictatorships, and the possibilities of free movement. Their work is inspired by travel and exile.

African short stories from the metaphorical children of Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka and Ngugi Wa 'Thiongo. Any book that includes this range of authors and ends with the wonders of Camara Laye and Alex La Guma has to be worth reading. Give yourself a treat. Discover the adrenalin rush, lyricism, joy, beauty, excitement, compassion and humanity of African writers. You will not be disappointed - no chance. So - Hamba Kahle (Go well)! Find similar books Profile.

series Granta Anthologies. Presenting a diverse and dazzling collection from all over the continent - from Morocco to Zimbabwe, Uganda to Kenya - Habila has focused on younger, newer writers, interspersed with some of their older, more established peers, to give a fascinating picture of a new and more liberated Africa

The Granta Book of the African Short Story introduces a group of African writers described by its editor, Helon Habila, as 'the post-nationalist generation'. Presenting a diverse and dazzling collection from all over the continent - from Morocco to Zimbabwe, Uganda to Kenya - Habila has focused on younger, newer writers, contrasted with some of their older, more established peers, to give a fascinating picture of a new and more liberated Africa.

Disdaining the narrowly nationalist and political preoccupations of previous generations, these writers are characterized by their engagement with the wider world and the opportunities offered by the internet, the end of apartheid, the end of civil wars and dictatorships, and the possibilities of free movement around the world. Many of them live outside Africa. Their work is inspired by travel and exile. They are liberated, global and expansive. As Dambudzo Marechera wrote: 'If you're a writer for a specific nation or specific race, then f*** you."" These are the stories of a new Africa, punchy, self-confident and defiant.Includes stories by:Rachida el-Charni; Henrietta Rose-Innes; George Makana Clark; Ivan Vladislavic; Mansoura Ez-Eldin; Fatou Diome; Aminatta Forna; Manuel Rui; Patrice Nganang; Leila Aboulela; Zoe Wicomb; Alaa Al Aswany; Doreen Baingana; E.C. Osondu


Steamy Ibis
This is a truly wonderful collection of the "third generation of African writers, who, until now, have rarely been anthologized." The editor, Helon Habila, states that his goal is to catch "the range and complexity of African short fiction since independence". She calls the writers in this anthology the 'post-nationalist' generation. Many of the writers live outside of Africa, several of them residing in Europe and the U.S.

"It's a sad but apparently undeniable fact that the short story has always taken second place to the novel in Africa. Some of the best African writers simply don't write short stories." Included in those who don't write short stories are Coetzee, Soyinka, Galgut, and many more. The editor believes that currently we are witnessing a renaissance in African literature. A boost to the short story is the Caine Prize for African Writing which originated in 2000. Many of the writers in this anthology have won this prize or have been short-listed for it.

The editor asks a valid questions: "How can you gather together the stories of a continent that is larger than China, Europe, and the United States put together? How can you 'anthologize' fifty-three countries, a billion people and over a thousand ethnic groups?" The anthology is organized "generationally, starting with the youngest writer and ending with the oldest". "Africa's strength is not, contrary to what most people like to think, its homogeneity, but in its diversity of cultures and languages and religions and skin colours. It is a large place; it contains multitudes." These multitudes are reflected in the stories included in this wonderful anthology.

My favorites, alphabetically, are the following:

The Arrangers of Marriage by Chimamda Ngozi Adichie. Adichie is one of my favorite writers and this story was included in her published work, This Thing Around My Neck. Ms. Adichie is NIgerian and is the author of two novels and a short story collection. She is a MacArthur Fellow. The story is about a Nigerian woman who enters into an arranged marriage with an American physician from NIgeria and feels like her identity is slowly being stolen from her.

An Ex-Mas Feast by Uwem Akpan was included in his collection Say You're One of Them which I have read previously. He, too, is Nigerian but now lives and works in the U.S. The story takes place in the slums of Nairobi where a family tries to survive by living off the proceeds of the oldest daughter, Maisha, a prostitute. She is planning to leave home and this turns the whole family dynamic upside down.

Street of the House of Wonders by Rachida el-Charni was new to me. Ms. El-Charni is from Tunis and continues to reside there. In this very short story, a woman is the victim of a thief who steals her necklace right off her neck. She chases him down and confronts him while others cowardly watch and offer no assistance.

Abdulrazak Gurnah is the author of Cages. He hails from Zanzibar and currently teaches at the University of Kent in the U.K. He is the author of seven novels. In Cages, Hamid works in a small bodega in exchange for his room. One day a woman begins to come in as a new customer. Hamid is smitten with her and sees her as someone "to be sung to, to be won with display and courage" unlike some women who can be bought with a few shillings. Hamid obsesses about her and feels shame because of that. Ultimately, she is not as he has imagined.

Alex La Guma is the author of Slipper Satin, the last story in the anthology. Born in Cape Town, South Africa, he was a political figure in his nation. He has written several novels. In Slipper Satin, Myra returns home after four months in jail for having an affair with a white man. This was against the law. The women in her village call her names and say she brought shame upon them. Myra is filled with bitterness and loss. The only redeeming thing in her life is the upcoming marriage of her sister Addie.

Laila Lalami is from Morocco. She has won several awards for her writing and currently teaches at the University of California at Riverside. Her story, Homecoming, is about Aziz who leaves Casablanca and his wife for five years to work in Spain. His plan is to earn enough money and then return to Casablanca to start a business. When he returns, things are very different than he had anticipated.

Alain Mabanckou, the author of The Fugitive, is a Franco-Congolese novelist and teaches at the University of California in Los Angeles. He is the author of several novels. His short story is about a young man who reflects about an incident in his life that took place seventeen years ago when he was a young African man. He did not buy his tickets for the Paris metro and gets chased by three ticket inspectors all through the station. The most angry and vehement about catching him is the black inspector who thinks all Africans should go back where they came from - they are ruining Paris. The young man ends up at the police station, pays his fine and believes that the black inspector "was probably hoping for the death penalty, which would have somehow returned a little dignity to his race. But what dignity? That was the question, and remains the question I feel sure I'll keep asking myself, in every book I write."

Maaza Mengiste was born in Ethiopia and now lives in New York City. She has received several fellowships and her debut novel has been translated into several languages. Her short story, A Good Soldier, is about Mesfin who has fled from Ethiopia to Los Angeles with his son. However, he can not flee his personal demons.

This collection really wowed me. I found that there was one common theme in several of the stories. The anticipated outcome rarely ever came to fruition and the protagonist was surprised with what came to pass. The stories are varied in theme and narrative. However, they all carry with them a taste of the life and ambiance of Africa. I loved the collection and highly recommend it.
Gabar
"But I grope after language to describe the feeling I experience on my evening walks, the light in the air and on the sea. This pleases me: that some things remain beyond my grasp..." thus muses the jogger in Henrietta Rose-Innes' "Promenade" about a significant encounter between him, a middle-aged unassuming copy writer, and a young ambitious boxer. The sense of enjoying "things remaining beyond (our) grasp" could be a leitmotiv for many of the stories in the "GRANTA Book of the African Short Story", encouraging us to read with open eyes, mind and heart. Collected and introduced by award winning Nigerian author, Helon Habila, this new anthology is an outstanding and wide-ranging rich smorgasbord of stories by twenty six writers from nineteen countries all across Africa - stories written in English or translated from French, Portuguese or Arabic.

Habila's highly informative 'Introduction' gives us a sense of his difficulty in selecting stories from the vast available material covering "fifty three countries with more than a thousand ethnic groups". He also comments helpfully on previous efforts to anthologize African writings and explains why his take is somewhat different and more contemporary in its objectives. Rather than highlighting the many common themes pertinent across the vast African continent, his aim is to provide examples of the diverse themes and approaches that have emerged since independence and/or are of importance to the younger, postcolonial generation of writers ("the third generation"). Of course, Habila adds, it is impossible to capture the diversity of African writing, even with the restriction on "the short story" in a "continent the size of China, Europe and the United States put together".

The stories, many selected for this anthology in dialog with the authors, address everything from the intimate domestic to the broad spectrum of social and political tensions, from immigrant/emigrant experience to glimpses into life on the margins of society, from power games and exploitation to racial issues. Some are highly satirical, e.g. Banyavanga Wainaina's "Ships in High Transit" or the re-imagined historical encounter with "The Moustached Man" as presented by Patrice Nganang. We find familiar names, such as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, whose story "The Arrangers of Marriage", a touching and profound story about a new immigrant to the USA, already published in her own excellent collection, The Thing Around Your Neck opens this anthology. Many others are less familiar or not known in North America at all.

It is impossible for me to highlight any stories as my favourites, there is none that did not touch me and made me reflect after I had turned the page. Many of the authors live and work outside their country of birth now, for shorter or longer periods, the majority of them in North America or Europe. That in itself gives reason to pause. Reading their brief bios at the end of the book, (followed by some googling) helps us to better appreciate them and their work. Hardly any of the authors represented in this anthology collection are debut authors. More than half have won the prestigious Caine Prize for African Writing, and are known also for their novels and other writings. [Friederike Knabe]
Kabandis
Had to get it for class. Wasn't too bad but wouldn't have picked it up on my own.