Kenya Twendapi?: Re-reading Abdilatif Abdalla’s pamphlet 50 years after independence

Kai Kresse

ABSTRACT

The pamphlet Kenya: Twendapi? (Kenya: Where are we heading?) is a text often referred to but rarely read or analysed. Abdilatif Abdalla wrote it as a twenty-two-year-old political activist of the KPU opposition as a critique of the dictatorial tendencies of Jomo Kenyatta and his KANU government in 1968, and consequently suffered three years of isolation in prison. Many (at least on the East African political and literary scene) know about Kenya: Twendapi? but few seem to have read it – indeed, it seems almost unavailable to read. Continue reading “Kenya Twendapi?: Re-reading Abdilatif Abdalla’s pamphlet 50 years after independence”

Rethinking Hawaa: Gender in Abdilatif Abdalla’s Utenzi wa Maisha ya Adamu na Hawaa through the Lens of John Milton’s Paradise Lost

This article by Meg Arenberg analyzes the representation of Hawaa (Eve) in Kenyan poet Abdilatif Abdalla’s epic poem Utenzi wa Maisha ya Adamu na Hawaa [Epic of the Life of Adam and Eve]. Building on Alamin Mazrui’s contention that the poem can be compared to John Milton’s Paradise Lost, scholarly debate on Milton’s treatment of Eve becomes a lens through which to more closely examine Abdalla’s Hawaa and the larger gender implications of her role in the poem’s narrative. Continue reading “Rethinking Hawaa: Gender in Abdilatif Abdalla’s Utenzi wa Maisha ya Adamu na Hawaa through the Lens of John Milton’s Paradise Lost”