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y separately published work icon Growing Up African in Australia anthology   autobiography  
Note:

'Compiled by Maxine Beneba Clarke with curatorial assistance from writers Ahmed Yussuf and Magan Magan'.

Issue Details: First known date: 2019... 2019 Growing Up African in Australia
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Learning to kick a football in a suburban schoolyard. Finding your feet as a young black dancer. Discovering your grandfather’s poetry. Meeting Nelson Mandela at your local church. Facing racism from those who should protect you. Dreading a visit to the hairdresser. House-hopping across the suburbs. Being too black. Not being black enough. Singing to find your soul, and then losing yourself.

'Welcome to African Australia. Compiled by award-winning author Maxine Beneba Clarke, with curatorial assistance from writers Ahmed Yussuf and Magan Magan, this anthology brings together the regions of Africa, and the African diaspora, from the Caribbean to the Americas. Told with passion, power, and poise, these are the stories of African-diaspora Australians: diverse, engaging, hopeful and heartfelt.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

Teaching Resources

Teaching Resources

This work has teaching resources.

Teachers' notes via publisher's website.

Notes

  • Dedication: For Africa, where we originated.

    For Australia, our home.

Contents

* Contents derived from the Collingwood, Fitzroy - Collingwood area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,:Black Inc. , 2019 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Introduction, Maxine Beneba Clarke , single work autobiography

'African-diaspora Australians are settlers, albeit black-bodied, on black land — Aboriginal land — of which sovereignty has never been ceded. For all the othering and discrimination faced by African-diaspora Australians in the current climate, there is no escaping the perhaps uncomfortable reality that we, the colonised, are sometimes also we, the colonisers. Any discussion of blackness in an Australian context must be set against the history of this truth: we, too, are settlers here.'  (Introduction)

(p. 1-8)
Potato Country, Kirsty Marillier , single work autobiography

'When we first moved to Australia, we lived in a small country town in the deep south of Western Australia. It was potato country. Everyone there, from memory, was a potato farmer or was somehow related to the region's famous potato-farming family, the Bendottis. They owned almost all of the land in the area. We lived on a Bendotti farm, and ate Bendotti potatoes straight out of the ground.'  (Introduction)

(p. 9-13)
Power, Hope Mathumbu , single work autobiography

'The sharp sting on my thigh brings my mind back to the present, and I look up to see Mama's face glaring at me disapprovingly as Pastor Mnisi continues to scream into the microphone, beads of sweat trickling down his forehead. Naledi's smirking face pops out from behind Mama's shoulder, and she shakes her head at me in feigned disapproval. It's been two hours now, and it doesn't seem like we are any closer to the praise-and-worship part of the day. These visiting pastors always have to make a show of it, as though we have all the time in the world, like in Africa.' (Introduction)  

(p. 14-18)
Her Mother's Daughter, Nyadol Nyuon , single work autobiography

My daughter's daughter, you have come? She stretched to her toes and reached out to kiss my cheek, but she could only manage to reach my neck - I was too tall, no longer the child she once held in her arms. (Introduction)

(p. 19-26)
Blending Families, Shona Kambarami , single work autobiography

'Ben is racist. That's not unusual — lots of people are. In fact, globally, racists are having a bit of a moment. I first became conscious to racism at eight years old. I wanted to be a gymnast then. I'd been looking forward to the final session of gymnastics training all week because after watching all my teammates win 'gymnast of the week', I knew it was my turn (everyone will win an award by the end of the year). Showing off, I spent most of the session teaching Ma how to do a handstand. I was gutted when I lost the final award of the year to her (for her amazing hand-stands). She was the only one among us to win twice. I looked around, and for the first time I realised everyone else was white, including Coach Norris. It wasn't that he didn't see me; it was that he did.' (Introduction)

(p. 27-32)
The Whitest White Girl, Prue Axam , single work autobiography

'I was the whitest white girl ever. I grew up in the north-west of Sydney, in Eastwood. My family has been there for hundreds of years. After that we lived in Cheltenham, which is near Beecroft. I went to the same primary school my father went to. I went to primary school with the kids of people my parents had gone to primary school with. It was a very local experience. There was not a lot of diversity of any kind - or, at least, I didn't feel there was. I was a curious kid, so I did find that a little boring. ' (Introduction)

(p. 33-37)
Rememberi"Back when I was too young to fly the coop,", Muma Doesa , single work autobiography (p. 38-42)
Winston, Lauren Mullings , single work autobiography

'Winston was always the loudest person on our street. The suburb I grew up in, Jordanville, was so innocuous that when one day they just took it off the map, no one even put up a fight.' (Introduction)

(p. 43-50)
Ant Bush, Sefakor Aku Zikpi , single work autobiography

'Like many African women, I've had a love-hate relationship with my hair that dates back to primary school.' (Introduction)

(p. 51-53)
Benched, Santilla Chingaipe , single work autobiography

'As far back as I can remember, I've always disliked team sports. Aside from the fact that I performed poorly in them — and spent most of the time bored, hungry and sitting on a bench — I thought I did better when my physical attributes were put to good use. And that only happened in track and field. I was very proud that I could run short distances at what I believed was a speed that rivalled Cathy Freeman's, and if I'm completely honest, it was the only thing I felt I was naturally good at. I was also obsessed with Marion Jones, of whom Pa see pictures in my mum's Ebony magazines. Marion Jones braided her hair just like I did, and I imagined I'd look like her when I was older and became a famous runner.'  (Introduction)

(p. 54-59)
How to Be a Green Monster, Cath Moore , single work autobiography

'There I am. In that old black-and-white passport-sized photo, perched on my mother's knee, wide-eyed and waiting.' 

(p. 60-70)
New Life, Iman Sissay , single work autobiography

'I think my mother is going to die tonight.

'It begins with no light. My siblings and I hear people yelling and running, as if there is some kind of disaster - an apocalypse, maybe. There is an odd wailing, almost like a howl, that comes intermittently. My siblings and I start to panic. We run up and down stain in the brownstone building, trying to find our par-ents. We don't know where we're going, but we want to escape the unilluminated premises and the horrible sound.'  (Introduction)

(p. 71-77)
Idle Thoughts, Khalid Warsame , single work essay (p. 78-81)
The Long Way Home, Guido Melo , single work autobiography

'Salvador is the blackest city in Brazil. It's where I was born, in 1976. Salvador is about seventy per cent black and thirty per cent white. I would compare it to a southern state in the United States — Mississippi, perhaps — because the thirty per cent run everything. They own all the businesses and have all the power. My father was in the air force. His position shielded me from a lot of racism, but 'shielded from' doesn't mean eliminated: I suffered from it throughout my childhood.' (Introduction)
 

(p. 82-92)
Ravenswood, Grace Williams , single work autobiography

'Ravenswood was not what I thought Australia would look like. It was a stranger and colder than I expected. The polite Christian girl my parents raised me to be would define this suburb of Tasmania, which consisted largely of a sprawling housing commission, as unwelcoming and slightly intimidating. My other, more impolite, self would describe it as a total nightmare.' (introduction)

(p. 93-99)
Both, Vulindlela Mkwananzi , single work autobiography

'One of my first memories as a child is shaking Nelson Mandela's hand, in a church in Ashfield, New South Wales. I was three years old. The reason I remember this so well is because he only patted my twin brother on the head, so I was flush with the glory of the handshake. We laugh about it now. '  (Introduction)

(p. 100-105)
Di Apprentice, Tinashe Pwiti , single work autobiography

'Kuda and I were twins. We had the typical sibling relationship: we bickered a lot, yet were very close. Kuda was the only boy in our family, so he was pretty spoilt. He was the golden child, and he knew it.' (Introduction)

(p. 106-116)
My Family Abroadi"My family abroad live on an island surrounded by water.", Adut Wol Akec , single work poetry (p. 117-124)
Ashy Kneesi"'Don't kneel", Manal Younus , single work poetry (p. 125-129)
African Mama, Sara El Sayed , single work autobiography

'We always want what we don't have,' my mother said, on our first visit to African Mama. Straight hair being what we both didn't have.' (Introduction)

(p. 130-133)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Collingwood, Fitzroy - Collingwood area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Black Inc. , 2019 .
      image of person or book cover 5715640593916766082.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 288p.p.
      Note/s:
      • Published 2 April 2019.

      ISBN: 9781760640934

Other Formats

Works about this Work

y separately published work icon Maxine Beneba Clarke and Magan Magan : Live at the Library Astrid Edwards (interviewer), Melbourne : Bad Producer Productions , 2019 16657210 2019 single work interview podcast

'In partnership with the State Library of Victoria, The Garret hosts a series of live events with leading Australian writers. This event was recorded on Tuesday 21 May 2019.

In this event, Maxine Beneba Clarke and Magan Magan discuss Growing up African in Australia with host Astrid Edwards and Shantel Wetherall. The discussion explores all angles of Growing Up African in Australia - Maxine's role as editor, Magan's role as editor and contributor, and Shantel's experience as a reader who grew up as part of the African Diaspora.'

Source: The Garret blurb.

Introduction Maxine Beneba Clarke , 2019 single work autobiography
— Appears in: Growing Up African in Australia 2019; (p. 1-8)

'African-diaspora Australians are settlers, albeit black-bodied, on black land — Aboriginal land — of which sovereignty has never been ceded. For all the othering and discrimination faced by African-diaspora Australians in the current climate, there is no escaping the perhaps uncomfortable reality that we, the colonised, are sometimes also we, the colonisers. Any discussion of blackness in an Australian context must be set against the history of this truth: we, too, are settlers here.'  (Introduction)

Growing Up African in Australia : Racism, Resilience and the Right to Belong Kathomi Gatwiri , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Conversation , 4 April 2019;

— Review of Growing Up African in Australia 2019 anthology autobiography

'For many African-diaspora people in Australia, belonging means masking yourself. To fit in is to curate one’s Africanness and one’s blackness. You teach yourself to see-saw between the splitting identities of who Australia needs you to be, and who you really are. You just never simply are.' (Introduction)

Growing Up African in Australia : Racism, Resilience and the Right to Belong Kathomi Gatwiri , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Conversation , 4 April 2019;

— Review of Growing Up African in Australia 2019 anthology autobiography

'For many African-diaspora people in Australia, belonging means masking yourself. To fit in is to curate one’s Africanness and one’s blackness. You teach yourself to see-saw between the splitting identities of who Australia needs you to be, and who you really are. You just never simply are.' (Introduction)

Introduction Maxine Beneba Clarke , 2019 single work autobiography
— Appears in: Growing Up African in Australia 2019; (p. 1-8)

'African-diaspora Australians are settlers, albeit black-bodied, on black land — Aboriginal land — of which sovereignty has never been ceded. For all the othering and discrimination faced by African-diaspora Australians in the current climate, there is no escaping the perhaps uncomfortable reality that we, the colonised, are sometimes also we, the colonisers. Any discussion of blackness in an Australian context must be set against the history of this truth: we, too, are settlers here.'  (Introduction)

y separately published work icon Maxine Beneba Clarke and Magan Magan : Live at the Library Astrid Edwards (interviewer), Melbourne : Bad Producer Productions , 2019 16657210 2019 single work interview podcast

'In partnership with the State Library of Victoria, The Garret hosts a series of live events with leading Australian writers. This event was recorded on Tuesday 21 May 2019.

In this event, Maxine Beneba Clarke and Magan Magan discuss Growing up African in Australia with host Astrid Edwards and Shantel Wetherall. The discussion explores all angles of Growing Up African in Australia - Maxine's role as editor, Magan's role as editor and contributor, and Shantel's experience as a reader who grew up as part of the African Diaspora.'

Source: The Garret blurb.

Last amended 18 Sep 2019 10:55:48
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