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In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon
Transcript of In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon
about the author, M.G. Vassanji 1. Raised on Uhuru street
in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Education: The University of Nairobi Massachusetts Institute of Technology The University of Pennsylvania Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics Moved to Canada, worked at an atomic power station
Developed an interest in Sanskrit and Indian philology
Toronto: began his writing After the publication of his first novel in 1989, he changed his career and became a writer. Author's works: 1989 The Gunny Sack
1990 Uhuru Street (short stories)
1990 No New Land
1993 The Book of Secrets
2003 The In-Between World of Vikram Lall
2005When She Was Queen (short stories)
2007 The Assassin’s Song
2009 Mordecai Richler (Biography)
2008 A Place Within: Rediscovering India
2012 The Magic of Saida Awards:
1994, 2003: Giller Prize
(for best novel in Canada)
2009: Governor's General Prize
(for best nonfiction work)
The Harbour Front Festival Prize
1990: Commonwealth First Book Prize
Bressani Prize 3. Historical, Social, and Cultural Context Dar es Salaam Capital of Tanzania for years
Many shops owned by Indian immigrants
"Haven of Peace"
"Uhuru Street" is set in the 1950's to the 1980's.
"In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon" is set in the '60's. 2. Summary of "In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon" Uhuru Street “This is the name of the street in Dar es Salaam where I grew up; now it seems narrower and brims with people and traffic, SUVs jamming the sidewalks I used to play on. Two-storey building are being (hazardously I think) extended vertically up to six and eight storeys.”
-Vassanji's personal words on "Uhuru Street" “The stories in this volume are about the Indians of Uhuru Street during these years of change.”
- Vassanji, in his introduction to "Uhuru Street" Tanzanian Independence Late 1800's: Dar es Salaam becomes the capital of the German East Africa Trading Company
WWI: Seized by Great Britain
Post-WWII: rapid growth in Dar es Salaam
Tanzania gained Independence Dec. 9, 1961
German -European in general- influence still remains in Dar es Salaam 4. Major themes of "In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon" Coming and Going Race Identity 5. Our Interpretation of "In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon" 6. Analytical Questions
How do you think Black's background contributes to the attitudes he has toward his 'family', traditions, and "respectability" as an adult? A. B. In this story, do we find European influence harming the East African culture? How have Europeans changed things? D. Consider how Vassanji's career progressed. He earned a PhD in Physics, then completely changed his mind and started writing. Does this remind you of the way that, depending on his decision, the character Black's life could undergo a drastic change? Could Vassanji's Black be a sort of self-portrait, about leaving a relatively comfortable, settled place in search of one's own identity? C. Consider German, Black's mean old father-in-law. What do you think is the significance of his character to the story? Works Cited Thank you ! "They think I don't know they call me 'Black.' Because I'm dark, almost an African. They have to give me a name, and what better name than something so obvious. Black." "I married to attain respectability, but right now I wonder if I've not had enough of it."
"I was an orphan half-caste when I married, mother black. I was brought up by an Indian family, half servant and half son, and the night following the arrival of Good Kulsum and German with their proposal, I was told to take it." “At the seashore, we drink coconut water…We wave at the passengers when they wave at us and we wonder from what world beyond they could be coming, what country the ship’s flag represents”
Davis, Rocio G. Negotiating Place: Identity and Community in M. G. Vassanjis "Uhuru Street. 3rd ed. Vol. 30. N.p.: ARIEL, 1999. Web.
Foran, Charles. "Tales of an Immigrant Twice Removed M.G. Vassanji Returns to Dar Es Salaam for 16 Stories." The Gazette: 0. OxResearch; ProQuest Central. Mar 14 1992. Web. 3 Dec. 2012 .
"M. G. Vassanji." M. G. Vassanji. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Dec. 2012. <http://www.english.emory.edu/Bahri/Vassanji.html>.
Njeru, Purity. "The African Executive | History of Dar Es Salaam." The African Executive | History of Dar Es Salaam. N.p., 6 Nov. 2006. Web. 03 Dec. 2012.
Philip Marchand, TORONTO S. "The High Cost of Leaving Africa Behind Uhuru Street by M. G. Vassanji McClelland & Stewart, 144 Pages, $14.95 Pb." Toronto Star: 0. OxResearch; ProQuest Central. Feb 29 1992. Web. 3 Dec. 2012 .
Vassanji, M. G. "In the Quiet of a Sunday Afternoon." Uhuru Street: Short Stories. Oxford [Eng.: Heinemann, 1991. 1+. Print.
Vassanji, Moyez G. "M G Vassanji." M G Vassanji. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Dec. 2012. http://www.mgvassanji.com/Biography.htm