The MFA in Creative Writing Program at Manhattanville College

Ngugi wa Thiong’o: A Symposium


The MFA program at Manhattanville College is proud to announce a one-day symposium with celebrated author Ngugi wa Thiong’o. The symposium is free and open to the public, and will take place on Friday, September 26, 2014, as part of the MFA program’s annual Fall Writers Weekend. Registered students can find the full Fall Writers’Weekend schedule here.

Ngugi wa Thiong’o is one of the world’s most celebrated authors as well as one of its most dynamically cross-genre writers. His volumes of critical essays include the classic volumes Decolonizing the Mind and Barrel of a Pen: Resistance to Repression in Neocolonial Kenya as well as recent collections such as Globalectics: Theory and the Politics of Knowing and  In the Name of My Mother: Reflections on Writers and Empire.

Ngugi’s memoirs and autobiographies include Detained: A Writer’s Prison Diary as well as two recent volumes, Dreams in a Time of War and In the House of the Interpreter (a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award). His widely celebrated novels include A Grain of Wheat, Petals of Blood, and Wizard of the Crow.

The symposium will begin at 3:30pm with a panel on Ngugi’s life and work. Featured presenters include John M. Mugane, Professor of the Practice of African Languages and Cultures and Director of the African Language Program at Harvard University, Hunter College Professor Jeremy Glick, and Manhattanville College Visiting Assistant Professor Fatin Abbas. Ngugi will give a keynote reading from his works at 7:00pm. Both the panel and the reading will be held in the West Room (Reid Castle).

For a detailed account of Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s life and career, please see “Why Ngugi wa Thiong’o should have won the Nobel Prize.” You can also watch Ngugi’s recent appearance on the BBC, “English is not an African language.” And please reserve September 26 in your calendar for this historic event. We look forward to seeing you at Manhattanville College in September!