Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ

Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ is a Kenyan-American poet, writer, and an Associate Professor of English at Cornell University. He is the author of The Rise of the African Novel: Politics of Language, Identity and Ownership, Mrs. Shaw, Black Star Nairobi, Nairobi Heat, and two books of poetry, Logotherapy and Hurling Words at Consciousness.

Some of his works have been translated into German, Turkish and French. A member of the African Literature Association’s Executive Council, Ngũgĩ co-founded the Mabati-Cornell Kiswahili Prize for African Literature.

Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ was born in 1971 in Evanston, Illinois, US. He grew up in Kenya and later returned to the United States. His father is the highly regarded African writer Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o.

Mũkoma holds a BA in English and Political Science from Albright College, an MA in Creative Writing from Boston University and a PhD focused on literary aesthetics in Romantic Britain and Independence-Era Africa from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

As an author, he has written several books, including Conversing with Africa: Politics of Change (2003), Hurling Words at Consciousness (2006), and Nairobi Heat (2009).

In 2013, New African magazine named him one of the 100 most Influential Africans. In 2015, Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ was a juror for the Writivism Short Story Prize and the Neustadt International Prize for Literature.

In collaboration with Prof. Laura Murphy, he edited The African Literary Hustle, a Special Issue of New Orleans Review.

A radio play he wrote in 2016 for Deutsche Welle, Drugs to Kill, Drug to Cure, was translated into Portuguese, Lingala, Kiswahili, Hausa, and French.

His most recent book is The Rise of the African Novel: Politics of Language, Identity, and Ownership (2018).

The former co-editor of Pambazuka News, Mukoma writes political columns for BBC Focus on Africa Magazine, as well as The Guardian, International Herald Tribune, Ebony.com, Chimurenga, Los Angeles Times, South African Labour Bulletin, Africa is a Country, Daily Nation, and Business Daily Africa.

He has been a guest on Democracy Now, NPR, Al Jazeera, Nation TV and the BBC World Service.

Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ lives in Norwalk, Connecticut.

Photo credit: www.mukomawangugi.com
years of life: 1971 present
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