for Pointe-Noire

Les cigognes sont immortelles

Alain Mabanckou|French edition
Life takes its course in Pointe-Noire, in the Voungou district. The young student Michel, who lives on the property of his family with Maman Pauline and Papa Roger, has the reputation of being a dreamer. But the worries of everyday life will soon be swept away by the wind of history.

Mabanckou is one of the greatest storytellers, famous for his book Black Moses. Les Cigognes Sont Immortelles, which combines the personal and political, shows the impact that history, violence, and civil war has on a family, against the backdrop of colonization and decolonization. I was particularly struck by this recent quote of his: “The civilization of tomorrow is the sum of marginalities.”

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