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Pensativities: Selected Essays


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Table of Contents

The Frontier of Culture Our Poor Rich People A Word of Advice and Some Advice Without Words What Africa Does the African Writer Write About? The Fly or the Spider? Citizenship in Search of Its City The Brazilian Sertao in the Mozambican Savannah Animal Conservation: A Noah-less Ark? Waters of My Beginning Languages We Don't Know We Know The Seven Dirty Shoes Dreaming of Home Travelling Fire Raisers The Planet of Frayed Socks Half a Future Baring One's Voice What if Obama Were African? Nutmegged by a Verse The Waters of Biodiversity As if the Sea Had Another Shore The China Within Us The City on the Veranda of Time Mozambique: 25 Years A Sea of Exchange, an Ocean of Myths The Sweet Containment of Sura Land of Water and Rain Flying Places A Boat in the Sky over Munhava

Promotional Information

Co-op available Galleys available (AWP, BEA, ALA) National radio campaign National print blog & broadcast campaign targeting The TLS, The Economist, LRB, The Guardian, The Independent, Harper's, The Nation, NYT, NYTBR (as adult & YA), WSJ, Guernica, Three Percent, Open Letters Monthly, Contemporary Literature, Paris Review Daily, The Complete Review, Ed Champion, Bookslut, the LA Review of Books, Bookforum, The New Inquiry, The New Republic, The NYRB, The Portuguese-American Journal, Rumpus, Brooklyn Rail, The Millions, The Minneapolis Star Tribune, The San Francisco Chronicle, Quarterly Conversation, Bookslut, the LA Review of Books, Coffin Factory, Huffington Post, Shelf Awareness, Salon, CNN Inside Africa and selected world literature/African literature publications: The Chimurenga Chronic, Words without Borders, etc. Possible blurbs from Ben Okri, Wole Soyinka; bookseller blurb from Stephen Sparks, Green Apple Books Pitching to PEN World Voices, Center for the Art of Translation Submission to BTBAs, Neustadts Goodreads giveaways Promotion through BITS website Possible LRB ad

About the Author

Mia Couto, an environmental biologist from Mozambique, is the author of 25 books of fiction, essays and poems in his native Portuguese. Couto's novels and short story collections have been translated into 20 languages. Two of his novels have been made into feature films. His work has been awarded important literary prizes in Mozambique, South Africa, Portugal, Italy and Brazil. His books have been bestsellers in Africa, Europe and Latin America. Six of Couto's books have been translated into English in the United Kingdom: two short story collections by Heinemann and four novels by Serpent's Tail. In 2007 he was the first African author to win the Latin Union Award for Romance Languages; in 2013 he was awarded the 100,000 Camoes Prize for Literature, in recognition of his life's work. In 2014 he received the $50,000 Neustadt Prize for Literature, and in 2015 he was shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize.


Praise for Pensativities "The essays of Pensativities ... confirm Couto's status as a public intellectual." --The Guardian "Remarkable ... If his recent Neustadt Prize is any indication, [Couto] is a presumptive Nobel Prize-winning writer that we ... should be reading."--National Post "For [Mia Couto], the postcolonial project is not primarily political or economic; it is humanistic in nature, and literary in its means. Its aim is to reconcile history and myth, past and present, subjugator and subject. It brings together black and white, male and female, Africa and the West, young and old, the city and the bush... When reading Couto, it sometimes seems that it is not only the fate of Mozambique or even Africa that is at stake, but that of the whole world."--Ryu Spaeth, Music & Literature "If there is an overarching drive that threads the collection together, it's Couto's commitment to recognize history's numerous flaws, and to use this history to embrace a diverse future, full of 'hybridities' of both self and cultural environs ... A fine writer who deserves a wide North American audience ... [Couto] is a constant witness to a country--flush with nouveau riche and mass poverty--trying to figure out its place in both Africa and the world."--Numero Cinq "[Having] helped birth ... the global literary scene's love affair with African fiction, Couto is a polymath who not only sustains a lively scientific career but is also a former political activist once deeply involved in the fight for his country's independence."--OZY

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