ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

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Betty Wamalwa Muragori Table

 

 

 

Overview

Betty Wamalwa Muragori (Sitawa Namwalie) is a poet and writer interested in exploring how Africans define themselves in today’s world. She worked in the development industry for many years after graduating from the University of Nairobi with a Bachelor of Science in Botany and Zoology, and later obtaining a Master of Arts degree in Environment, Society and Technology from Clark University in Massachusetts, USA. She lives and works as a development consultant in Nairobi. In writing, Sitawa finds her creative expression. But Sitawa has achieved excellence in many areas of life including representing Kenya in tennis and hockey in her youth. A mother of three gorgeous children, Sitawa is married to a man of infectious humour and rare generosity. Her collection of poetry Cut of My Tongue is published by Storymoja.—Storymojahayfestiva

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Table

An African Out in the World

Blue Eyed Dolls in Africa  

Dangerous Abroad  

How I Became a Marxist 

Mind Games and Other Poems

 

Queen Africa (and other poems) 

 

Say My Name

  

The Seasons of My City

 

Tribe on Kenyan Political Violence

 

Would You

 

 

Related files

 

The African World

Banning Chinua Achebe in Kenya (Binyavanga Wainaina) 

Fidelity Bank and the Binyavanga Wainaina Jibe (Uche Nworah)

Kinyan Writers

kwani?  (Binyavanga Wainaina) 

Poems for Peace in Kenya (Maurine Otor)

Sham Elections in Kenya (Keith Jennings)

Transitional Writings on Africa

Who Cares If Kenya Bleeds To Death (Kam Williams)

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In Nairobi we still had the old airport that had been built in homage to a village where everyone knew one another.  It was built to honour relationships and public displays of love.  The actual buildings looked more like a series of barns that housed cattle.  Departure and arrival scenes were multihued affairs.  They featured a range of villages from different parts of the country, all assembled at the same time, in this one place, to see off their relatives and friends and to welcome returning ones. I recall a riot of colourful dress, a range of facial features, different ages from new born babes to old grandparents, many languages all spoken in high excitement. . . .

I arrived at Heathrow airport and stood on the queue in a state of simmering panic.  Half an hour before we were due to land, I had realized I did not have my passport.  My turn on the queue came.  The immigration officer looked at me and asked for my passport, and I burst out crying.  I told him I didn’t have it and regaled him with the story of my French adventures and how I had left my passport at an airport in France, either Charles de Gaulle or Orly.  It turned out that he was formerly from Kenya and was fatherly and sweet.  He let me into Britain on some temporary papers.  An African Out in the World Or When I was a Tennis Player

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Her people must have come from people who neighbored the Pokot.  And in that quintessential old African way, they intermingled with little distinction.  Over the years ethnic groups that neighbored would swap dress, traditions, practices and relations with ease.  My self image was shaken.  Here I was looking at people whom I thought of as unknown strangers.  I had in fact come on a great adventure to discover them, to separate myth from fact.  Were they really warlike people?  Or cattle rustlers who could spear you for your cows.  Now I realized that all the time there was a relationship with me, through my beloved Sitawa.  Blue Eyed Dolls in Africa

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Twenty years later as I watched the elections that brought another dumb, dumb unfathomable US president into power, George Bush Jr., I realized that my vantage point with its emphasis on linear “development” or maedeleo had warped my thinking.  Until that instant, I had thought development also brings highly enlightened people who would not lie about the presence of weapons of mass destruction to bring pain and destruction to innocent women and children many miles away in another country.  For what, for oil, (I can’t believe that), to get revenge for daddy, (that’s too weird) to get their way (what way, the American way in Baghdad?) To be right about a perspective? (Probably the only right answer outrageous as it may seem.) How I became a Marxist 

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Cut off My Tongue by Sitawa Namwalie

Cut Off My Tongue will leave you speechless! It rants, sweats, and breaks into song and dance as it explores the truths that shape us Modern Africans: Our beliefs, the way we behave and why. Woven into music and dance, Sitawa Namwalie's dramatised poetry is moving and frighteningly honest. It is politics—and love—that bites as it teases!

Blue Note—A Story of Modern Jazz

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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The Black Press: New Literary and Historical Essays

By Todd Vogel

In a segregated society in which minority writers and artists could find few ways to reach an audience, journalism gave them access to diverse U.S. communities. The original essays in this volume show how marginalized voices attempted to be heard in their day. The Black Press progresses chronologically from abolitionist newspapers to today's Internet and reveals how the black press's content and its very form changed with evolving historical conditions in America. The essays address the production, distribution, regulation, and reception of black journalism, illustrating a more textured public discourse, one that exchanges ideas not just within the black community, but also within the nation at large. The contributors demonstrate that African American journalists redefined class, restaged race and nationhood, and reset the terms of public conversation, providing a fuller understanding of the varied cultural battles fought throughout our country's history. Dayton Library  / Questia

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Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America

By Melissa V. Harris-Perry

According to the author, this society has historically exerted considerable pressure on black females to fit into one of a handful of stereotypes, primarily, the Mammy, the Matriarch or the Jezebel.  The selfless Mammy’s behavior is marked by a slavish devotion to white folks’ domestic concerns, often at the expense of those of her own family’s needs. By contrast, the relatively-hedonistic Jezebel is a sexually-insatiable temptress. And the Matriarch is generally thought of as an emasculating figure who denigrates black men, ala the characters Sapphire and Aunt Esther on the television shows Amos and Andy and Sanford and Son, respectively.     

Professor Perry points out how the propagation of these harmful myths have served the mainstream culture well. For instance, the Mammy suggests that it is almost second nature for black females to feel a maternal instinct towards Caucasian babies.

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Sex at the Margins

Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry

By Laura María Agustín

This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label 'trafficked' does not accurately describe migrants' lives and that the 'rescue industry' serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice.

"Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality."Lisa Adkins, University of London

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Laying Down the Sword

Why We Can't Ignore the Bible's Violent Verses

By Philip Jenkins

Commands to kill, to commit ethnic cleansing, to institutionalize segregation, to hate and fear other races and religions—all are in the Bible, and all occur with a far greater frequency than in the Qur’an. But fanaticism is no more hard-wired in Christianity than it is in Islam. In Laying Down the Sword, “one of America’s best scholars of religion” (The Economist) explores how religions grow past their bloody origins, and delivers a fearless examination of the most violent verses of the Bible and an urgent call to read them anew in pursuit of a richer, more genuine faith. Christians cannot engage with neighbors and critics of other traditions—nor enjoy the deepest, most mature embodiment of their own faith—until they confront the texts of terror in their heritage. Philip Jenkins identifies the “holy amnesia” that, while allowing scriptural religions to grow and adapt, has demanded a nearly wholesale suppression of the Bible’s most aggressive passages, leaving them dangerously dormant for extremists to revive in times of conflict.

Jenkins lays bare the whole Bible, without compromise or apology, and equips us with tools for reading even the most unsettling texts, from the slaughter of the Canaanites to the alarming rhetoric of the book of Revelation. Teaching Genocide

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Exporting American Dreams

 Thurgood Marshall's African Journey

By Mary L. Dudziak

Thurgood Marshall became a living icon of civil rights when he argued Brown v. Board of Education before the Supreme Court in 1954. Six years later, he was at a crossroads. A rising generation of activists were making sit-ins and demonstrations rather than lawsuits the hallmark of the civil rights movement. What role, he wondered, could he now play? When in 1960 Kenyan independence leaders asked him to help write their constitution, Marshall threw himself into their cause. Here was a new arena in which law might serve as the tool with which to forge a just society. In Exporting American Dreams: Thurgood Marshall's African Journey (2008) Mary Dudziak recounts with poignancy and power the untold story of Marshall's journey to Africa

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        

Enjoy!

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more) 

 

 

 

 

posted  21 April 2010

 

 

 

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