Ngugi wa Thiong'o
(1938-)

Kenyan leftist novelist who grew up during the time of the Mau Mau anti-colonial revolt. In the 70's organized several popular plays, with the actors/actresses being normal people, and the plays with strong messages of anti-imperialist and social justice. Arrested in 1977 for his opposition to the dictatorship of Daniel arap Moi. After his release he left the country and has spent the rest of his life in exile. Once a member of a
of a small, underground Marxist group in Kenya, his is more of a mild leftist in reality.



Novels
A Grain of Wheat - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1967): 277 pages, takes place after the end of the Mau Mau struggle. The book follows certain people and shows how they were affected by the "state of emergency" that the british colonialists declared during the Mau Mau struggle. It shows how the colonialists systematically disrupted Kenyan society, destroying villages and relocating them in easily controlled, guarded, areas; rounding up people randomly and imprisoning them in massive concentration camps that were built during the emergency; brutally torturing the prisoners in the concentration camps to force them to give information or to renounce the Mau Mau oath; the forced slave labor villagers were forced to do by the occupying colonial army; the land grabbing from peasants that was carried out by the collaborationist Kenyans, etc...

Petals of Blood - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1977): 408 pages,

Devil on the Cross - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1980): 250 pages

Matigari - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1987): 175 pages,


Plays
The Trial of Dedan Kimathi - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1976): 92 pages,

I Will Marry When I Want - Ngugi wa Thiong'o (1977): 117 pages, was written after the "flag independence" (Nkrumah's term) from Britain. The play is an attack against neo-colonialism in Kenya, and the upper class and ruling class sycophants who are more than happy to be tools of imperialism in the economic rape and exploitation of "independent" Kenya. Ngugi also makes use of the legacy and tradition of the Mau Mau to criticize the contemporary situation (of neo-colonialism and capitalist plunder) in Kenya.


Short Stories
A Meeting in the Dark - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

A Mercedes Funeral - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

Gone with the Drought - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

Minutes of Glory - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

The Black Bird - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

The Mubenzi Tribesman - Ngugi wa Thiong'o

Wedding at the Cross - Ngugi wa Thiong'o