Secure the Base: Making Africa Visible in the Globe


Author: Ngũgĩ Wa Thiong’o

9780857423139 | HB | pp. 134+xviii | 2016 | Seagull Books

This is a rare collection of the author’s essays on a range of issues related to Africa such as slavery, colonialism, and neocolonialism and Africa’s place in the world.

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For more than sixty years, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o has been writing fearlessly on the questions, challenges, histories and futures of Africans, particularly those of his homeland, Kenya. In his work, which has included plays, novels, and essays, Ngũgĩ narrates the injustice of colonial violence and the dictatorial betrayal of decolonization, the fight for freedom and subsequent incarceration, and the aspiration toward economic equality in the face of gross inequality. With both hope and disappointment, he questions the role of language in both the organization of power structures and the pursuit of autonomy and self-expression.

Ngũgĩ’s fiction has reached wide acclaim, but his nonfictional work, while equally brilliant, is difficult to find. Secure the Base changes this by bringing together for the first time essays spanning nearly three decades. Originating as disparate lectures and texts, this complete volume will remind readers anew of Ngũgĩ’s power and importance. Written in a personal and accessible style, the book covers a range of issues, including the role of the intellectual, the place of Asia in Africa, labour and political struggles in an era of rampant capitalism, and the legacies of slavery and prospects for peace. At a time when Africa looms large in our discussions of globalization, Secure the Base is mandatory reading.


Ngũgĩ Wa Thiong'o







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About the Author

The author was born in Limuru, Kenya, in 1938. One of the leading African writers and scholars at work today, he is the author of many novels, short stories, essays, a memoir and several plays. His novels include The River Between (1965) and Petals of Blood (1977). He received the prestigious Nonino International Prize for Literature in 2001. Currently he is distinguished professor of English and comparative literature at the University of California, Irvine.


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