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The Dark Child: The Autobiography of an African Boy

Long regarded as Africa's preeminent Francophone novelist, Laye (1928-1980) herein marvels over his mother's supernatural powers, his father's distinction as the village goldsmith, and his own passage into manhood, which is marked by animistic beliefs and bloody rituals of primeval origin. Eventually, he must choose between this unique place and the academic success that lures him to distant cities. More than an autobiography of one boy, this is the universal story of sacred traditions struggling against the encroachment of a modern world.

A passionate and deeply affecting record, The Dark Child is a classic of African literature.

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The Dark Child: The Autobiography of an African Boy is a distinct and graceful memoir of French author Camara Laye’s youth in the village of Koroussa, French Guinea.

Long regarded as Africa’s preeminent Francophone novelist, Laye (1928-1980) herein marvels over his mother’s supernatural powers, his father’s distinction as the village goldsmith, and his own passage into manhood, which is marked by animistic beliefs and bloody rituals of primeval origin.

Eventually, he must choose between this unique place and the academic success that lures him to distant cities. More than an autobiography of one boy, this is the universal story of sacred traditions struggling against the encroachment of a modern world.

A passionate and deeply affecting record, The Dark Child: The Autobiography of an African Boy is a classic of African literature.

This book is a distinct and graceful memoir of Camara Laye’s youth in the village of Koroussa, a place steeped in mystery.

Camara Laye

Camara Laye (January 1, 1928 – February 4, 1980) was a writer from Guinea. He was the author of The African Child (L’Enfant noir), a novel based loosely on his own childhood, and The Radiance of the King (Le Regard du roi). Both novels are among the earliest major works in Francophone African literature.
Camara Laye later worked for the government of newly independent Guinea, but went into voluntary exile over political issues.

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