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Rushdie is a major contemporary writer, who engages with some of the vital issues of our times: migrancy, postcolonialism, religious authoritarianism. This Companion offers a comprehensive introduction to his entire oeuvre. Part I provides thematic readings of Rushdie and his work, with chapters on how Bollywood films are intertextual with the fiction, the place of family and gender in the work, the influence of English writing and reflections on the fatwa. Part II discusses Rushdie's importance for postcolonial writing and provides detailed interpretations of his fiction. In one volume, this book provides a stimulating introduction to the author and his work in a range of expert essays and readings. With its detailed chronology of Rushdie's life and a comprehensive bibliography of further reading, this volume will be invaluable to undergraduates studying Rushdie and to the general reader interested in his work.
In 1899, an Englishman named Martin Pearce stumbles out of the desert into an East African coastal town and is rescued by Hassanali, a shopkeeper whose beautiful sister Rehana nurses Pearce back to health. Pearce and Rehana begin a passionate illicit love affair, which resonates fifty years later when the narrator's brother falls madly in love with Rehana's granddaughter. In the story of two forbidden love affairs and their effects on the lovers' families, Abdulrazak Gurnah brilliantly dramatizes the personal and political consequences of colonialism, the vicissitudes of love, and the power of fiction.
The best-known novel by the great Kenyan writer Set in the wake of the Mau Mau rebellion and on the cusp of Kenya's independence from Britain, A Grain of Wheat follows a group of villagers whose lives have been transformed by the 1952-1960 Emergency. At the center of it all is the reticent Mugo, the village's chosen hero and a man haunted by a terrible secret. As we learn of the villagers' tangled histories in a narrative interwoven with myth and peppered with allusions to real-life leaders, including Jomo Kenyatta, a masterly story unfolds in which compromises are forced, friendships are betrayed, and loves are tested.
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