Posts tagged africa

“The Dark Child” by Camara Laye

This is a fairly short and simple autobiographical account of a boy growing up in Guinea in the 1930s and 40s. Camara Laye wrote it in 1954 while studying in France, and you can feel the nostalgia for his homeland. Although the writing style is quite understated, the emotion is communicated quite effectively, and it’s very moving in places. As the title suggests, the book only deals with his childhood, and it is faithful to a child’s outlook on the world. At the start, his entire world is the veranda… Read More

Marxism 2007: Day Three (Saturday)

“Engels and the rise of class society” wasn’t quite what I expected. Firstly the speaker was not Mark Thomas the comedian-activist, but Mark Thomas the manager of socialist bookshop Bookmarks. And secondly, he was talking not about modern class society, but about the development of class in ancient and prehistoric societies. Fortunately, neither of these proved problematic. He was an interesting and knowledgeable speaker, and the topic raised valuable points. His basic thesis was that the competitiveness, greed and selfishness that now seem so pervasive are actually fairly recent phenomena…. Read More