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Traces of a Life

Traces of a Life – A Collection of Elegies & Praise Poems

By Abena P. A. Busia



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ISBN: 978-0-9555079-7-7 | 128 pages | Weight: 0.17kg | Paperback | Published 2008 | Rights: World

Categories: African | Black Interest | Literature | Poetry | Politics |


In Traces of a Life, Busia is starting a new genre in praise poetry as a modern griót. Grióts are trained oral historians - key figures in West African society who carry the cultural knowledge and identity of each people. To quote Stephanie Newell's appellation, Busia considers herself amongst those "grióts with pens in their hands". The collection is a refreshing departure from the conventional form of written poetry while incorporating aspects of orality in written form.

This collection of poems of lamentation and celebration were written and dedicated to individuals - some famous (including Nelson Mandela and John Lennon) some unknown - (including family members, friends and work colleagues) whose lives touched the author in a profound way. "I discovered," writes Busia, "that these poems when placed together not only record the lives of those to whom the poems are dedicated, but in the end trace my own."

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About the Editor

Abena P. A. Busia is associate professor in the Department of Literatures in English for Race and Gender Studies at Rutgers University, New Jersey. Widely published in the fields of Colonial Discourse and Literatures of Africa and the Black World, she is also author of an earlier volume of poems, Testimonies of Exile (1990). .

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