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“This multi-generational, cross-cultural anthology […] is infused with multiple perspectives, aesthetics, preoccupations and sensibilities. It offers up a broad sense of community between Black women writers who are consciously interrogating what it means to be human from our unique perspectives.” Bernadine Evaristo
Featuring the work of Black women poets from Botswana to Brazil, in this collection, we encounter ancestors who made love, just for the sake of love, and women who die with each orgasm while attempting to mark the extent of their own humanities.
This is for the nuns, the singers, the clowns, the diviners and the conjurers who reject the constant attempt to clean up history. The wildly imperfect women of slick braids, shiny skin and succulent lips, building new homes from clouds for future legions.
Here congregate the women, womxn and womyn who do not believe in tough love that disguises hurt just to prove a point. They dance with the dead with exquisite feet, cheekbones high, reflecting their mothers’ smiles.
Because no one claps for martyrs, these dirty/pretty women learn to walk cities like they own them, choosing the battles of their hearts.
If this collection teaches anything, it is that love is always messy, that our sacrament requires wet wipes and that we are just flesh and bone honing practice.
Contributors include iconic poets such as Nikki Giovanni, Diana Ferrus, Miriam Alves, Jackie Kay, NourbeSe Phillip, Cheryl Clarke, Lebogang Mashile, Staceyann Chin, Olumide Popoola, Makhosazana Xaba, Koleka Putuma, Safia Elhillo, Gabeba Baderoon, Warsan Shire, Ladan Osman, Anni Domingo, Elizandra Souza, and Jumoke Verissimo.
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Men Don’t Cry invites us into the home of Mourad Chennoun in Nice, where his father spends his days fixing things in the backyard, his mother bemoans the loss of her natal village in Algeria, and the name Dounia is taboo.
When Mourad’s father has a stroke, he is forced to rise above his fear of becoming an overweight bachelor, tied down to home by his mother’s cooking, and take steps to bridge the gulf between his family and estranged sister.
This quest takes him to the Paris suburbs where he starts his teaching career, and falls into the world of undocumented Algerian toyboys and discovers that Douania has become a staunch feminist, aspiring politician and fierce assimilationist.
Can Mourad adapt to his new, fast-paced Parisian life and uphold his family’s values? A poignant coming-of-age story from the widely-acclaimed author of Kiffe Kiffe Tomorrow.
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Unbury our Dead With Song is a novel about four talented Ethiopian musicians – The Diva, The Corporal, the Taliban Man and Miriam, who are competing to see who can sing the best Tizita (popularly referred to as Ethiopian blues). Taking place in an illegal boxing hall in Nairobi, Kenya, the competition is covered by a US educated Kenyan journalist, John Thandi Manfredi, who writes for a popular tabloid, The National Inquisitor. He follows the musicians back to Ethiopia in order to learn more about the Tizita and their lives. As he learns more about the Tizita and the multiple meanings of beauty, he uncovers that behind each of the musicians, there are layered lives and secrets. Ultimately, the novel is a love letter to African music, beauty and imagination.