Silence Would Be Treason

Ken Saro-Wiwa

Íde Corley, Helen Fallon, Laurence Cox

Last writings of Ken Saro-Wiwa

THESE LETTERS AND poems are invaluable fragments of a living conversation that portrays the indomitable power in humans to stay alive in the face of certain death — to stay alive even in death. Reading through the treasure trove of the letters and poems compiled here as The Last Writings of Ken Saro-Wiwa evoked such intense memories of his resolute struggles against an oil behemoth and a deaf autocratic government. His crusade frames one of the most tumultuous periods of Nigeria’s history; his tragic story evokes anger and demands action to resolve the crises that first led the Ogoni people to demand that Shell clean up Ogoni or clear out of the territory. It was his leadership, in great part, that forced Shell out of Ogoni in January 1993.

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Book Description

THESE LETTERS AND poems are invaluable fragments of a living conversation that portrays the indomitable power in humans to stay alive in the face of certain death — to stay alive even in death. Reading through the treasure trove of the letters and poems compiled here as The Last Writings of Ken Saro-Wiwa evoked such intense memories of his resolute struggles against an oil behemoth and a deaf autocratic government. His crusade frames one of the most tumultuous periods of Nigeria’s history; his tragic story evokes anger and demands action to resolve the crises that first led the Ogoni people to demand that Shell clean up Ogoni or clear out of the territory. It was his leadership, in great part, that forced Shell out of Ogoni in January 1993. The letters are a testament of hope. Being one side of robust conversa­tions between two persons that many would find unlikely as close friends, we learn the lessons that indeed ‘friends love at all times and brothers (and sisters) are born for adversity’, as a proverb in the Bible states. This is where we must applaud Sister Majella McCarron for preserving and making pub­lic these letters that Ken Saro-Wiwa wrote to her between 20 October 1993 and 14 September 1995. The collection includes essays by the three editors, select bibliography and recommended resources.

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