The Dark Child The Autobiography of an African Boy

Camara Laye; Introduction by Philippe Thoby-Marcellin; Translated by James Kirkup and Ernest Jones

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

080901548X

9780809015481

Trade Paperback

192 Pages

$15.00

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The Dark Child is a distinct and graceful memoir of Camara Laye's youth in the village of Koroussa, French Guinea. Long regarded Africa's preeminent Francophone novelist, Laye (1928-80) herein marvels over his mother's supernatural powers, his father's distinction as the village goldsmith, and his own passage into manhood, which is marked by animistic beliefs and bloody rituals of primeval origin. Eventually, he must choose between this unique place and the academic success that lures him to distant cities. More than an autobiography of one boy, this is the universal story of sacred traditions struggling against the encroachment of a modern world. A passionate and deeply affecting record, The Dark Child is a classic of African literature.

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Praise for The Dark Child

"The Dark Child has the force of nostalgia, which spurred Laye to write it to relive his exile at a time when he was far from his people."—From the introduction by Philippe Thoby-Marcellin

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BOOK EXCERPTS

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Camara Laye was born in 1928 in the village of Koroussa, French Guinea. He was still in his twenties and studying engineering in France when he wrote The Dark Child. He died in Senegal in 1980.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Camara Laye; Introduction by Philippe Thoby-Marcellin; Translated by James Kirkup and Ernest Jones

  • Camara Laye was born in 1928 in the village of Koroussa, French Guinea. He was still in his twenties and studying engineering in France when he wrote The Dark Child. He died in Senegal in 1980.
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