African Rhapsody: A Collection of Contemporary African Short Stories

Overview

A collection of twenty-five contemporary African short stories, many of them published in English for the first time, showcasing Africa's rich ethnic and cultural diversity. Containing a foreword by noted author Chinua Achebe, the book features stories on a wide range of themes, and introduces heretofore undiscovered or inaccessible African writers.

For this collection, esteemed scholar and critic Obradovic has assemble 25 stories by the best emerging and ...

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Overview

A collection of twenty-five contemporary African short stories, many of them published in English for the first time, showcasing Africa's rich ethnic and cultural diversity. Containing a foreword by noted author Chinua Achebe, the book features stories on a wide range of themes, and introduces heretofore undiscovered or inaccessible African writers.

For this collection, esteemed scholar and critic Obradovic has assemble 25 stories by the best emerging and award-winning contemporary African writers--stories that illuminate the realities, the hardships, and brief respites of modern African life. Foreword by Chinua Achebe (Things Fall Apart).

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Obradovic gathers fascinating and illuminating stories, told and translated with varying levels of skill. The 25 tales in this compilation span the African continent and cover themes from growing up under colonialism and apartheid to aging and dying in the Biafran conflict. Gender is another thing. Obradovic states in her preface that contemporary female writers ``have not cultivated the short story as a genre,'' so there is only one woman in the collection, Sindiwe Magona of South Africa. But her ``It Was Easter Sunday the Day I Went to Netreg,'' is an expertly crafted, psychological powerhouse of a story about a pregnant unwed teenager from a black South African township who is taken by her mother and her mother's white employer to have a backroom abortion. Afterward, the girl reflects that ``nothing can bring back the innocence I lost that day . . . . '' Some stories end too abruptly, although ``The Advance,'' by Henri Lopes, is all the more devastating for its sudden conclusion. It depicts a Congolese maid, whose own son lies at home dying from starvation and illness, trying to coax her white Belgian mistress's pampered daughter to eat. Other compelling stories present strong anti-war messages. In ``The Last Battle,'' by Ossie O. Enekwe, a Biafran war hero ``loses faith'' in his own side and surrenders to the enemy after seeing the men he is assigned to lead--``waifs waiting for extermination.'' These stories, many of them powerful illustrations of moral dilemmas, leave in their wake a memorable impression of contemporary African life. (Mar.)
Library Journal
This outstanding assemblage of 25 short stories by African authors, many appearing for the first time in English, offers compelling insight into the realities and hardships of life in Africa. An up-to-date biography is included for each contributor, who range from writers of the early colonial era (Henri Lope, Luis Honwana), to those cataloging the death and destruction of revolutionary and religious upheaval (O.O. Enekwe, A. Maja-Pearce, Alifa Rafaat), to those concerned with modern behavior and relationships (S. Magona, Charles Mungoshi). The foreword consists of an enlightening historical overview by noted Nigerian novelist Chinua Achebe. This anthology is as appealing as editor Obradovic's Looking for a Rain God (S. & S., 1990), which also collected contemporary African stories. It is required reading for anyone who studies African culture and the human condition.-- Gayle S. Leach , Prince George's Cty. Memorial Lib. System, Largo, Md.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385468169
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 2/1/1994
  • Edition description: 1st Anchor Books ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 353
  • Product dimensions: 5.19 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword
Preface
A Handful of Dates 2
The Advance 9
Papa, Snake & I 19
The Prophetess 36
A Child in the Bush of Ghosts 58
It Was Easter Sunday the Day I Went to Netreg 74
The Brother 88
The Dignity of Begging 121
The Garden of Evil 134
Bossy 153
A Night Out 168
Hot Days, Long Nights 174
Her Three Days 186
A Life in Detail 205
The Three-Piece Suit 213
The Wicked Tongue 218
Four Dimensions 235
Thought Tracks in the Snow 250
Waiting for a Turn 259
The Other City 271
God of Meme 279
Africa Kills Her Sun 290
At the Time of the Jasmine 305
The Last Battle 318
Civil War I-VII 328
Acknowledgments 350
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