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Saro-Wiwa, Ken

nigerian stories writer social

(Nigerian, 1941–95)

Saro-Wiwa was primarily a political writer, publicizing his tribe's battle with the Nigerian government over environmental and humanitarian issues through his poems, plays, stories, children's books, novels, and essays, believing that his work would ‘enable the Ogoni people to confront their tormentors’. The author of over twenty books, an ex-teacher and businessman, he was also the writer and producer of the popular Nigerian sitcom, Basi and Company, a social satire banned in 1992. Begin with A Month and a Day: A Detention Diary (1995), a personal story posthumously published after he was hanged by the Nigerian administration. Move on to A Forest of Flowers (1986), stories which, systematically portraying individuals defeated by a range of social mechanisms, make a wider point about distrust, betrayal, and corruption in a community.

Ben Okri, Wole Soyinka, William Boyd  SR

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