By Doris May Lessing

ISBN-10: 006195201X

ISBN-13: 9780061952012

The British writer writes approximately her homeland--from which she used to be exiled through the previous all-white government--discussing political corruption, AIDS, communal residing, and masses extra. through the writer of The 5th Child. 35,000 first printing. $35,000 ad/promo. journey.

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Additional resources for African Laughter: Four Visits to Zimbabwe

Example text

The game had mostly gone. The bush was nearly silent. Once, the dawn chorus hurt the ears. Lying in our blankets under the trees on the sandveld of Marandellas, or in the house on the farm in Banket, the shrilling, clamouring, exulting of the birds as the sun appeared was so loud the ears seemed to curl up and complain before–there was nothing else for it–we leaped up into the early morning, to become part of all that tumult and activity. But by the 1980s the dawn chorus had become a feeble thing.

They said: ‘This happened, this is the truth’–but I knew that had happened, that was the truth. Someone trying to talk me out of what I knew was true, must have been the important thing that happened to me in my childhood, for I was continually holding fast to moments, when I said to myself, ‘Remember this. Remember what really happened. ’ Even now I hold a series of sharp little scenes, like photographs, or eidetic memory, which I refer to. So when I fought to retain a ‘view’, a perspective on a road, the little effort was only one on a long list.

The convention at his school was that feats and exploits should be described in a way that was both boastful and modest. The feats themselves, climbing dangerous rocks, or forbidden roofs, or trees, or going into pools where crocodiles had been seen–these were boasts, because all were foolhardy. But his descriptions made nothing of the dangers, for that was the modesty prescribed by their school. , Kipling generally, Buchan, Sapper, the memoirs of First World War soldiers. You could cross from one side of a deep gorge on a rope the thickness of an eyelash, or go into fire to rescue a comrade, or wriggle yourself on a six-inch outjut three storeys up a building from one window to another, and you could tell everyone about it, but the voice had to have a certain negligent humour about it, and then it was all right.

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African Laughter: Four Visits to Zimbabwe by Doris May Lessing

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