The great Kenyan writer and Nobel Prize nominee’s novel that he wrote in secret, on toilet paper, while in prison—featuring an introduction by Namwali Serpell, the author of the novel The Old Drift
One of the cornerstones of Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o’s fame, Devil on the Cross is a powerful fictional critique of capitalism. It tells the tragic story of Wariinga, a young woman who moves from a rural Kenyan town to the capital, Nairobi, only to be exploited by her boss and later by a corrupt businessman. As she struggles to survive, Wariinga begins to realize that her problems are only symptoms of a larger societal malaise and that much of the misfortune stems from the Western, capitalist influences on her country. An impassioned cry for a Kenya free of dictatorship and for African writers to work in their own local dialects, Devil on the Cross has had a profound influence on Africa and on post-colonial African literature.
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About the Author
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and essayist from Kenya whose novels have been translated into more than thirty languages. He is Distinguished Professor of English at the University of California, Irvine. He lives in Irvine, California.
Namwali Serpell (introducer) has won the Windham-Campbell Prize, the Caine Prize for African Writing, and the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award. The author of the novel The Old Drift, she was born in Zambia and now lives in San Francisco, where she is an associate professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley.
What People are Saying About This
“One of our century’s great novels.” —Tribune
“Ngugi is the most celebrated of African novelists. What he offers is nothing less than a new direction for African writing.” —British Book News
“Striking.” —The Guardian