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㮸 Find A Man of Good Hope ꖏ Author Jonny Steinberg 숓

㮸 Find A Man of Good Hope ꖏ Author Jonny Steinberg 숓 㮸 Find A Man of Good Hope ꖏ Author Jonny Steinberg 숓 chapter 1MogadishuIn describing his childhood there is really only one place for Asad to begin It was early one morning he is not sure of the day, but the month was January 1991 This he understands from collective memory nobody who knows Mogadishu, the capital city of Somalia, is unaware of what happened that month.He believes that he was eight years old Whether he knew before that he was Daarood and that others were not is irretrievable now, but he certainly came to know it on that day.In January 1991, militias began to attack the northern parts of Mogadishu The men in these militias were Hawiye, and they wanted to overthrow the government of President Mohamed Siad Barre, who was Daarood.The militias were based in the countryside outside the city, Asad tells me They controlled the north of the country They would come into Mogadishu to attack and regroup, attack and regroup, in waves.They came at night, and their target was all Daarood men As far as they were concerned, Daarood men were government men So, at night, the Daarood would leave their homes and gather together in government buildings for protection They would leave women and children and the elderly at home In Islam, one does not kill civiliansthat means women, children, boys under fifteen, and the very old Daytime, the men came back to see their wives.Asads father was sleeping away at nights, coming home during the day Then one morning he did not come back Or the next, or the next It had been five days.When I look back now, I see that if I had been focused on my mother, I would have been aware There were three women staying in the house I see now that my mother was hiding them She must have discovered that some neighbors who were not friends had seen these three women She must have known that she was going to get finger pointed I can see that now Back then, I could not grasp that a person as solid as a parent could feel fear.I woke in the morning and found my mother pressed up against the front door, staring through the cracks I came up next to her and looked too There were five militiamen on our property They were moving around the yard I had no fear I wanted to look at them closer, not through cracks I tried to open the door My mother grabbed me and pulled me to her I was right up against her leg I still did not share her fear I find myself thinking now Where were my brothers and sisters I dont remember In my mind it is just me and my mother We were watching the militiamen Three of them came up to the door and knocked very hard My mother did not want to let them in.They pushed against the door and she pushed back Then they started kicking, thumping the door My mother pushed herself heavily against it The door started breaking I saw a pair of hands come through They tore a hole out of the door, big enough for a person to climb through My mother just stood there, as if there was still a door to push against Still, she held me to her leg The first militiaman just stared at her She stared back Then the second militiaman pushed the first one out of the way and shot my mother in the chest.I wonder what the militiamen did when they entered the house Did they slaughter the women hiding there For how long did they remain How much time elapsed between their departure and the arrival of the first friendly adults, for between those two moments the children were, I presume, alone with their mothers corpse What did they make of it What happened to their world during those minutes or hours Each time these questions find their way to the tip of my tongue, they stop and turn around, and I swallow them back down I do not have the courage I simply record what comes from his mouth.And so I know only that he spent one further night at his parents home and that the following day his auntthe wife of his fathers brotherwhisked the five children across the city to her house Later that evening, Asads uncle appeared, the first adult male Daarood he had seen in days He does not recall for how long he and his siblings stayed there When I say a few days, he advises me, that could mean anything from two nights to two weeks In any case, after some time, we split up Rahma and I went with my uncle The other children went with my aunt We walked out of Mogadishu and kept walking I think that that was the last day it was possible for Daarood people to sleep in Mogadishu.As I picture Asad heading farther from home, I think, than anything else, not of what he left behind but of what he took with him He would never again be firmly moored to any particular adult, to any family He would become a child whose connections to others would dissolve and re form and disappear again And yet he says with certainty that on his great journey through childhood and across the African continent he took his mother.He has no memory of her face, or of the sound of her voice her place inside him is ambient than that, powerful It is indistinguishable from his sense of himself, of why he is a man who works hard and is kind and finds things funny indeed, why he is the sort of man who can share such memories and keep his composure.If there is such a thing as a best mother, mine was it, he says My father was working all the time It was she who was with us twenty four hours a day She was very, very kind I do not remember her raising her voice or beating us I remember calmness and gentleness I remember that she enjoyed being with us If we were naughty, she would tell us that our punishment would come when our father got home But then, in the evenings, she would protect us from our father.I last saw her at such a young age The way she taught me, although I grew up an orphan, I still feel that what she was I am today I did not lose her despite her death I am not sure that words can describe what I am trying to tell you I mean that by the time I was seven, she had already made me.I press him to attach these feelings to particular memories of her He thinks silently for a long time.Her hair was very beautiful, he finally offers Some women had many plaits My mother did not She parted her hair in the middle into two long plaits that went halfway down her back We children played with her hair, sometimes all of us at the same time I remember my hand touching my sister Khadras hand while we both played with our mothers hair Khadras skin was so sticky, my mothers hair so smooth I remember taking Khadras hand away and running my cheek across the smoothness of my mothers hair.When I ask him to describe his home in Mogadishu, he smiles and says he remembers each detail But as soon as he begins talking, he stumbles and, in frustration, grabs my notebook and begins to draw.He mumbles softly as he works, his cadences patient and singsongy, as if he is taking a small child through an exercise Then he puts the notebook back in my lap Aha, he says.As I examine the geography of his first eight years, he points a finger to the very center of his drawing, the colored in dot representing the hindi tree.It reminds me of my brothers and sisters, he tells me When the hindi tree is big, it grows tall and wide, and everyone sits under it But ours was still small, so the only people interested in it were the ones who did not mind the sunthe children.He closes his eyes and tells me that he is picturing his siblings one by one, each under the hindi tree, each wrapped up in his own game I ask him to describe them to me My older sister is Khadra, he says She was much whiter than us She was almost like you And her eyes were not like my black eyes She had the eyes of a goat The color was quruurax, like glass not black or brown, not red, but like glass.And then he describes his other siblingshis younger sister, Rahma, and his brothers, AbdiFaseeh and HasanAbshirand I am startled as I listen, for he remembers them all, it seems, by their teeth.Hasan Abshirs were red, he says Khadras were red with white dots Mine are long and straight and very white And yet we had the same mother and father It is strange.He curls his upper lip right up to the base of his nostrils and taps the nail of his index finger against his front teeth Like his hands, they are long and well shaped.I store this oddity in my notebook, not quite sure what to make of it It is only later, after several weeks of conversation, that I come to understand what he invests in his teeththey are his most vital connection to his father.Asad refers to him as Aabbo, Dad in Somali His memories of Aabbo take two forms.The first is a medley of recollections, some of them images, others just disembodied ideas Aabbo left early in the morning and returned very late, after the children had eaten dinner In the first sequence in the medley, the children are summoned to the living room in the evening where their father receives them in the manner of a patriarch, quizzing each child about his or her day top to bottom, Asad says, like a stern inquisitor.Aabbo was often away He traded somewhere in the Arab world, Asad recalls, somewhere on the other side of the Gulf of Aden On some days Asad says he does not remember what his father traded on others he talks about animal skins bought from the nomads who came into Mogadishu, and sold on to Arabs in Yemen or Saudi Arabia or Dubai He remembers that his father was once arrested and jailed in connection with his worksomething to do with taxes or duties.My memories of this are not concrete, he says It is just a piece of knowledge that floats in my head I dont remember the adults talking about it I dont remember whether they were worried Maybe they were worried the regime could keep you locked up a long time.Asads other memory of his father takes the form of a single, vivid image It was early evening Asad heard footfalls in the yard He stepped outside to find his father standing there, a bag over his shoulder He had been away, somewhere, on business Asad had not been expecting him Aabbo, he said.In reply, his father put down his bag, flashed the broadest smile, and opened his arms Asad ran to him and found himself lifted up to his fathers face They were so close that their noses almost touched He inhaled Aabbos breath it was fresh, it smelled of a sweet herb He observed the pores in the skin of his fathers cheeks above his thin beard they glistened the skin was a little oily But what remains with him most vividly is the smiling mouth into which he stared the wide, pink tongue the teeth so long and so perfectly shaped they seemed like narrow ivory tombstones.I have his teeth, Asad tells me When I look in the mirror and examine them, I think of the evening I looked into his mouth.I think of Asad examining the smiles of the many Somalis he has met on his journey he is judging his distance from them by what he sees in their mouths.And then there is the madrassa It was quite literally across the road from his home, as he remembers it The journey from his front gate to his classroom took less than a minute.That the making of ink is his most cherished memory of school is no surprise, for the rest, it seems, was not very nice He remembers his teacher Dahir by his ceaseless voice and by his thrashing stick Dahir had been reciting both books of the Koran for so long that he could shout passages of the Holy Book in rotation to twenty students at a time, each student at a different place in the text.That is what Asad remembers He clutched the handle of his loox in one hand, his pen in the other, and waited his turn His cup of ink lay ready at his feet The sound of Dahirs voice, hurling holy passages at one student after the next, would grow closer Then it was Asads turn Dahir would shout Asad would write on his loox He kept his writing small, for if both sides of the loox were full before his passage was complete, he would have to try to remember the remainder of the passage by the sound of Dahirs voice.As soon as Dahir moved on, Asad would begin to memorize what he had just written, for the clock was ticking in the late afternoon, he would have to wash the ink off his loox with a damp clod of grass The following morning, he recited what he had learned to Dahir How much Asad failed to recall determined how heavily Dahir beat him.Asad was six when he started at the madrassa Learning both books of the Koran was meant to take another six years He should have begun learning other subjects when he was twelve, like the Latin alphabet so that he could write Somali, then geography, history, and mathematics.On the morning he describes the madrassa, I drive away from Blikkiesdorp thinking of what he has said, and I see his mother and the learning of the Koran as opposite poles of his childhood His time with her was what he lived for, it seems, while his time at school was so cold and drab Then I blink and think again, and now I see that mother and madrassa share something important They were the two pieces of Mogadishu Asad took with him into exile His mother he felt inside him all the time As for the learning of the Koran wherever he went, no matter how far or how strange, somebody was always starting a madrassa Wherever he found himself, the Holy Book would open in front of him until he knew the whole thing by heart, as he does now, and as do the one hundred sixty or so Somali souls who bed down each night in Blikkiesdorp, each of them many years from home.Excerpted from A Man of Good Hope by Jonny Steinberg Copyright 2015 by Jonny Steinberg Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House LLC All rights reserved No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.An extraordinary story A powerful testament to the resilience of humanity The Guardian London Razor sharp Steinberg works from the inside out He places himself at the living, palpitating, always fragile heart of a story in the making A Man of Good Hope trembles with the contingency of the lives Steinberg inhabits as a writer, as though the story itself, the telling of it, right now as you read, is implicated in his protagonists fate Los Angeles Review of Books An engrossing book Compelling The humanity, suffering and bravery of Mr Abdullahi are palpable and make A Man of Good Hope a book well worth reading The Economist Steinberg writes true, relevant, modern narratives conveyed with such eloquence and poignancy they acquire almost Shakespearean gravitas The Spectator London Beautifully recounted personal without being intrusive, educational without being preachy, and absolutely worth reading Pittsburgh Post Gazette A tale of luck, hustle, survival, and determination, A Man of Good Hopeis an extraordinary examination of what it means to be human Buzzfeed What a brave, important book Steinbergs writing is so human, so humane and so honest Steinberg stands shoulder to shoulder with other great writers who have also made sensible and visible so much that might otherwise remain insensible and invisible out of the political and human tragedies all too common in AfricaMichela Wong, Ryszard Kapuscinski and Ishmael Beah Steinbergs central question is one for all of us what does it means to live a fully human life and whom among us has either the courage or the luck to live that life Alexandra Fuller, author of Scribbling the Cat A Man of Good Hope tells one mans extraordinary and moving story, revealing the reality of life at the bottom of the worlds worst pile The Times London A masterpiece Steinberg has illuminated a modern African odyssey to brilliant effect Martin Meredith, author of The State of Africa Only through Steinbergs adroit persistencehe knows when to probe and pry and when to retreat when Asad seems nettled by constant questioningcan the account of Asads remarkable, almost miraculous life journey emerge Minneapolis Star Tribune South African journalist Steinberg vividly recounts one Somali mans experience of diaspora, resulting in a book that is part biography and part contemporary history Steinbergs thoughtful approach and Asads attitude of droll resilience make for a tale that any reader can appreciate Publishers Weekly Painstaking and humane Irish Examiner Weaves together the many personas of a man whose story is at once unique and an archetypal example of an all too large collective.For truly capturing the power of dreams and the resilience of human nature, this book deserves a wide audience Kirkus Reviews I ntuitively gentle writer, patiently and thoughtfully teases out the memories of a young Somali man, Asad Abdullahi, a boy kicked through life like a stone Steinbergs caring, questioning prose illuminates how, after all Asad has endured and all he remembers, he can still be a man who carries hope with him A remarkable story, skillfully etched Booklist Dating A Mormon Man Dating Man Tag line is an important part of a person s profile those with ordinary slogans see that people are less 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items Israel News Jerusalem post Israel news every moment Jewish State involving politics, celebrities, innovation hard hitting, fast paced represents nation fenrisulfr Foreign Policy Steinberg, senior researcher Cape Town Institute Africa, author five books, Sizwe Test Young Through A Good Hope FREE shipping qualifying offers Jonny Wiki Bio Everipedia wiki African writer scholar several books about everyday life wake transition democracy them, Midlands murder white farmer, jonnysteinberg BuzzFeed has twice won prestigious literary prize, LibraryThing Epidemic, LibraryThing Making prison narrative his second book, Number, journalist examines gangs bid understand violence engulfed post seldom conducts straightforward relationship primary sources characters book repeatedly lays doubtfulness professional acts which, C SPAN Watch SPAN collection videos, access clips recent appearances View positions held brief bio Penguin Random House bred critically acclaimed Test, published Vintage also Very Murder eBook Kindle edition Download it once read device, PC, phones tablets Use bookmarks, note taking highlighting reading Why I m Moving Back To buzzfeed Feb Award winning inspired him write new Hope, return country Great Texts GIPCA teaches Studies Oxford visiting Professor Wits Economic Research WiSER Much explores institutions prison, farm, police, clinic New, Rare Alibris Alibris hardcovers, softcovers, rare, print editions, signed copies, Crime prevention goes abroad Policy transfer policing Corresponding Author Oppenheimer Building, Campus, Town, Email gmail com Conversation Winning Writer Join evening selling discuss forthcoming One Day Bethlehem, tells raises questions ethics Associate Classics Grant Parker moderate QA discussion A Man of Good Hope

 

    • A Man of Good Hope
    • 3.4
    • 279
    • Format Kindle
    • 336 pages
    • 0804171041
    • Jonny Steinberg
    • Anglais
    • 16 July 2017

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