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Migritude Paperback – November 30, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Kaya Press (November 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1885030053
  • ISBN-13: 978-1885030054
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.2 x 7.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #118,836 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Shailja Patel was born and raised in Kenya, has lived in London and San Francisco, and now divides her time between Nairobi and Berkeley. Trained as a political economist, accountant and yoga teacher, she honed her poetic skills in performances that have received standing ovations on three continents. She has been described by the Gulf Times as "the poetic equivalent of Arundhati Roy" and by CNN as "the face of globalization as a people-centered phenomenon of migration and exchange". Patel has appeared on the BBC World Service, NPR and Al-Jazeera. Her work has been translated into twelve languages. She is a recipient of a Sundance Theatre Fellowship, an African Guest Writer Fellowship from the Nordic Africa Institute, the Fanny-Ann Eddy Poetry Award from IRN-Africa, the Voices of Our Nations Poetry Award, a Lambda Slam Championship, and the Outwrite Poetry Prize.

More About the Author

SHAILJA PATEL was born and raised in Kenya, has lived in London and San Francisco, and now divides her time between Nairobi and Berkeley. Trained as a political economist, accountant and yoga teacher, she honed her poetic skills in performances that have received standing ovations on three continents. She has been described by the Gulf Times as "the poetic equivalent of Arundhati Roy" and by CNN as "the face of globalization as a people-centered phenomenon of migration and exchange". Patel has appeared on the BBC World Service, NPR and Al-Jazeera. Her work has been translated into twelve languages. She is a recipient of a Sundance Theatre Fellowship, an African Guest Writer Fellowship from the Nordic Africa Institute, the Fanny-Ann Eddy Poetry Award from IRN-Africa, the Voices of Our Nations Poetry Award, a Lambda Slam Championship, and the Outwrite Poetry Prize.

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
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The potent reminder of "Shilling love" brought me to tears.
rsunshine
The sensual beauty of the saris and their symbolism is a rich backdrop to her story.
Pam Gill
The best book I have ever read; the best poetry I have ever experienced.
Paul Dosh

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By jandeder on November 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
here's what I felt after my first experience of Migritude:

For Shailja after Migritude

you pack a hefty wallop, Ms Patel,
you and your brew
distilled from bushels of memories
soaked in admonition
injected with judgment
corked carefully away like family treasures
left to ferment subcutaneously
steeped in your bones to marrow of rage

til
when the time is ripe
through every pore every follicle
you secrete the untold stories

two hundred proof, they burn going down
light headed we listen
heavy hearted we hear

we drink deep draught of your migritude
reel but do not fall
we are swamped in Niagara of your migritude
but do not drown
we are burned in Vesuvius of your migritude,
smelted, burned clean.

You, smelter
aglow.

I hope everyone gets to experience this unique and uplifting work.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Paul Dosh on November 3, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Shailja Patel's "Migritude" needles your conscience, demands that your muscles awaken to the riotous dance of social justice, and thrills your literary taste buds with its epic roller coaster through the bitter valleys of imperial violence and the savory peaks of revolutionary triumph. Plus it takes care of all your holiday shopping in one fell swoop -- admittedly, a few of your in-laws may take your gift of "Migritude" as some sort of personal criticism of their unenlightened embrace of capitalism -- but that's just the signal for you to take them to a live performance of "Migritude." The best book I have ever read; the best poetry I have ever experienced.

Paul Dosh
Associate Professor
Macalester College
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David Martin on December 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is a very intense and engaging book, as well as an education in itself -- in more than just political and cultural senses -- for the reader, especially if they are not familiar with the background Shailja comes from.

The things that stood out for me in this book are many. The menacing refrain of rising inflation in "Shilling Love" bringing home the impact of the manipulation of economies by Empire on people's lives, within and without. Harrowing family tales that double as exposures of crimes committed by Empire. Startingly evocative characterizations of the author's mother and father.

I found the structure of the book to be a challenge at first. A little perseverance will reward the reader, however, as it slowly comes together in the reader's mind as a satisfying whole.

It seems strange at first that the second half of the book is called "Shadow Book," when the effect is more like a sunlight of meanings and revelations (especially for the reader who has not seen the live performance.) But perhaps the shadows refer to the darker realities that are thrown in relief by the very shining of the author's intelligence and courage.

There are books which one may enjoy and then forget. This book you won't forget.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sneha on November 10, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Shailja Patel's book is deeply satisfying for hungry readers who crave poetry that feeds the soul and nudges every brain cell awake. Beautiful writing that is extremely personal and yet manages to address the wider political issues of empire, injustice, colonialism and what it means to be an immigrant. This is not writing for the faint of heart - it is strong and rich and powerful; it is disturbing and uncomfortable but funny and tender. I'd recommend this to anyone who loves poetry, anyone who is looking for a good Christmas gift to buy, anyone at all...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ira Israel on November 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
"Migritude" is a very powerful, poignant, and insightful book full of rich personal postcards that vividly paint a much larger and somewhat horrifying portrait of the injustices of hegemony in the modern world. Shailja Patel is a terrific writer and great poet and I was very very moved by her stark juxtapositions between the empire(s) (currently singular but that is changing) and the colonies. I highly recommend this wonderful book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Matthew J. Brockwell on November 27, 2010
Format: Paperback
Kind of like what happens when a musician listens every day to the ordinary sounds that surround him or her and one day suddenly realizes that s/he is surrounded by a symphony that is aching to be set free. Clacking of train wheels, crying, laughing, boxes opening and shutting, fabric swishing, envelopes tearing open, sotto conversations in the next room that you cannot hear, shouted conversations in the same room that you wish you couldn't. Suddenly unified into something epic. With a devastatingly calm voice intoning softness, steel, anger, laughter, fury and joy, from the center of a whirlwind.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joan O. on October 31, 2012
Format: Paperback
With Migritude, Shailja Patel has taken activist poetry to a whole new level. Her eloquent piece brilliantly exposes Empire and its legacy of colonial atrocities, oppression and domination. Yet, amid all the pain from injustice, admiration is evoked by the defiant voice of the persevering migrant. A voice whose passionate, rage-filled cries for justice pour out onto the pages of Migritude, as she fights to shed her labels of race, ethnicity, nationality and gender. Migritude is seasoned with powerful moments that led my mind wandering, but soon after had me yearning to return and devour what words remain. If you are in the market for some politics, feminism and anti-imperialism, the package doesn't come any better than Migritude.
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