Read Ambiguous Adventure by Cheikh Hamidou Kane Katherine Woods Wole Soyinka Online

ambiguous-adventure

The celebrated classic by a groundbreaking figure in African literature addresses a critical contemporary issue—the collision of Islamic African values and Western culture.Hailed by Chinua Achebe as one of the greatest African novels ever written, this long-unavailable classic tells the tale of young Samba Diallo, a devout pupil in a Koranic school in Senegal whose parentsThe celebrated classic by a groundbreaking figure in African literature addresses a critical contemporary issue—the collision of Islamic African values and Western culture.Hailed by Chinua Achebe as one of the greatest African novels ever written, this long-unavailable classic tells the tale of young Samba Diallo, a devout pupil in a Koranic school in Senegal whose parents send him to Paris to study philosophy.But unknown to Samba, it is a desperate attempt by his parents to better understand the French colonial forces transforming their traditional way of life. Instead, for Samba, it seems an exciting adventure, and once in France he excels at his new studies and is delighted by his new "marvelous comprehension and total communion" with the Western world.Soon, though, he finds himself torn between the materialistic secularism and isolation of French civilization and the deeper spiritual influences of his homeland. As Samba puts it: "I have become the two."Written in an elegant, lyrical prose, Ambiguous Adventure is a masterful expression of the immigrant experience and the repercussions of colonialism, and a great work of literature about the uneasy relationship between Islamic Africa and the West—a relationship more important today than ever before....

Title : Ambiguous Adventure
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ISBN : 9781612190549
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 176 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Ambiguous Adventure Reviews

  • Orsodimondo
    2019-05-01 23:47

    LA GRANDE PRINCIPESSAIo credo nella legge degli uomini, e in quella di dio solamente se è identica, o subordinata, a quella degli uomini. Il dio di Kane è maledettamente forte, potente, presente. È asfissiante.Cito a caso:fra Dio e l'uomo non esiste la minima affinità', o non so quale altra relazione storica ... Dio non è simile a noi ... credo anche che l'onnipotenza di Dio creatore sia tale da non ammettere che alcunché la contraddica, nemmeno l'affermazione del nostro libero arbitrio. Il dio di Kane è probabilmente lontano dal dio cristiano - ma personalmente sono poco interessato anche a quest'ultimo.M’interessa molto invece lo scontro-incontro tra nord e sud, tra bianchi e neri, tra indigeni e colonizzatori: e su questi aspetti il libro non delude, va in profondità (meglio la seconda parte della prima)E, in un mondo che sembra abitato soprattutto da uomini che strapensano, strapregano e straparlano, triplo hurrà per la Grande Principessa, donna meravigliosa, personaggio stupendo, il mio preferito senza ombra di incertezza.Per qualcuno sarà sicuramente un libro da massimo dei voti. Non mi meraviglio, ma io devo fermarmi prima.

  • حمد المطر
    2019-04-20 21:55

    رواية أعتقد وأتمنى أن الترجمة هي سبب تقييمي لها.فيها معاني كثيرة وفلسفة عطاء وأخذ الرب عز وجل، وعلاقة المستعمر بالمستعمر.كانت الحوارات أشبه إلى متون الكتب العلمية منها إلى كلام بشر،فقط بأواخر الرواية وجدت انفعالات بالحوار.الاحداث غير مشوقة بالقدر الكافي، أشبه إلى الحياة العاديةثم القفزات في الحدث كانت حادةأضيف الكثير من الحوارات فيها نقاش جميل عن الرب ونظرات عن الحياة وكان منها أجزاء قيمة كثيرة.

  • رشيد فضيل
    2019-05-01 20:45

    أول رواية إفريقية أقرؤها، رواية لصوت كبير من أصوات إفريقيا المستعمرة اكتشفتها صدفة أثناء قراءة محاضرة قديمة للعلامة عبد الله العروي. عندما تبلغ الصفحة 190 منها وهي الصفحة الأخيرة تعيد تقليب الرواية لتتأكد هل انتهت فعلا! تعطي هذه الرواية الانطباع أن حاديمو كان أسرع في كتابتها للتخلص منها ومن أسئلتها الحارقة للتفرغ للبحث والدراسة. ورغم أن النص بالفرنسية ووأحداثه تدور في بادية السينغال وفي جزء منها في فرنسا فإن القارئ المغربي هو الأقرب إلى الفضاء الوجداني والثقافي للرواية: المسيد، الفقيه، أصوات الطلبة تتعالى بالمنافسة في القراءة، صوت سوط الفقيه يجول فوق رؤوسهم، شيخ القبيلة، جدلية الحداثة (المدرسة الفرنسية) والتقليد (الكتاب القرآني)، الاغتراب أو العودة، الأرض أو البحر، أسئلة حارقة ومؤلمة كتبتها كان بنفس صوفي روض به اللغة الفرنسية وأظنه بذلك أعجز الفرنسيين ورفع سقف التعبير عاليا أمامهم وبلغتهمرواية ليست للقراءة، رواية للقراءة وإعادة القراءة

  • وليد الشايجي
    2019-05-04 19:39

    كانت صراع نفسي وجدال حول الهوية -بفلسفة عميقة جدا- أكثر منها رواية... استمتعت باستشرافات الرؤى لكن ليس بالقصة

  • هدير
    2019-04-22 16:43

    لا أدري إنتهيت منها دون أن أفهم نهايتها تماما .. غامضة حقا .. الشخصيات فيها متداخلة جدا وأحيانا لا تعرف من المتكلم ! .. أعجبتني بعض الأجزاء منها و أعجبني الشيخ جدا ... قلة جدا من هم بذاك الذهد ... مقتطفات أعجبتني : _ هل يمكن أن تقوم حضارة و تنهض في غيبة الإنسان أو في حالة عدم توازنه ؟_إن الحضارة معمار من أجوبة ، فروعتها ، ككل مسكن ، تقاس بالنسبة إى مدى ما توفره من الراحة التي يجدها الإنسان فيها . _أتعطي الله كل ما يستحقه من أفكارك وأفعالك ؟_ليس المطلوب مبايعته مرة واحدة أن تنطق بالشهادة الكبرى نظريا وكفى ، إنما المطلوب هو أن تجتهد في مواؤمة كل خلجة من أفكارك بما تعقله من منهجه ، أتفعل ؟ _لا أعرف ما أعتقد لكن حجم مساحة ما أجهله من الضخامة و الرحابة ، بحيث لا مندوحة لي من الاعتقاد .

  • مشاري العبيد
    2019-05-02 20:56

    حوارات، نقاشات فلسفية مطولة، أقصت الحدوتة من الرواية، حتى بدت لا تُذكر، والفصول المعنونة أضحت كالمقالات التي لا ضير من قراءتها منفصلة .بداية الرواية، استعرض المؤلف الشخصية الأساسية (سمبا-جالو) وسط بيئتها (مدارس الكُتاب) من خلال مشاهد ثرية، ولكنه مع تدفق الفصول بدت الصورة تبهت شيئًا فشيئًا، فما بقي سوى حوارٌ يليه حوار. وتهت في مواضع عدة، التبست علي هوية المتحدث.القيمة المرجوه من العمل سامية دون شك، ولكن شخصيًا، لم ترُق لي طريقة العرض.

  • Saleh Alasfour
    2019-05-09 20:59

    " كنت اعتقد أني علمتك بما يكفي لجعلك مؤهلاً لمنارسة العبادات ، الغرب الذي تعيش فيه، يظن أن الله يهب ويسترد الإيمان كيف شاء "فيها قيم جميلة

  • عبدالعزيز مال الله
    2019-04-23 19:41

    بالرغم من لغة المترجم الرائعة والحاضرة في العمل، إلا أن الاطار العام والجانب الفلسفي الطاغي عليه لم يرق لي كثيرا وشعرت بالملل والضياع بكثير من الفصول. أعجبتني النهاية التي كسرت جزءاً من رتابة العمل

  • John
    2019-05-11 20:49

    African (victim) perspective on colonialism. A depressing book. The protagonist struggles to preserve his dying native African heritage, in the face of an allegedly soulless French culturo-economic milieu, which he finds disenchanting, but can't escape. I can buy into that premise.The book states contrary to what "people have wanted us to believe", Germans are not more racist by nature than any other European settlers.In the epiloque a post-life experience is depicted, resembling, actually, the episode in Wilder's our "Our Town" play, which imagined dead people as continuing to experience life, but on a different plane. I can take it both ways: either as a literal expression of faith, or as a symbolic statement saying "Look! The dead have something to say to us."

  • Yulonda
    2019-05-03 21:52

    Samba Diallo's French education made him began to doubt the religion, Islam, that he had studied and loved as a child in Africa. Yet, at the same time, he felt out of place in France; the society seemed soulless. After returning to his own country, he could not bring himself to pray. Thus, he is also out of sorts with his own people. Kane writes, "I am not a distinct country of the Diallobé facing a distinct Occident, and appreciating with a cool head what I must take from it and what I must leave with it by way of counterbalance. I have become the two. There is not a clear mind deciding between the two factors of a choice. There is a strange nature, in distress over not being two (150-51). To me, this is profound, and I was reminded of Du Bois as I read that passage--"one ever feels his twoness..." It certainly seems that Samba Diallo's conflict is the novel is about "two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body." This is a familiar theme among colonized people, and I liked reading a non-American perspective.I did not like the ending, but i wont divulge it. Some things in the book were probably lost in translation (or my lack of knowledge of the culture), and it may have been better to read the novel in the original French. Alas, I do not read French, so I will continue to read Senegalese writers' works in English.

  • Zeina
    2019-05-07 22:45

    Le roman de cheikh Hamidou kane raconte le déchirement vécu par un jeune musulman africain pris entre 2 éducations, 2 univers, celui de son pays et celui de l'Europe.En effet, Kane voulait faire de son œuvre un récit autobiographique traitant du profond dilemme culturel auquel se trouve confrontés les africains: le choix entre 2 éducations:1- l'éducation traditionnelle, religieuse et mystique qui consiste à faire une interprétation spécifique du coran en liaison avec la vie quotidienne.2- l'éducation occidentale moderne.Alors ce dilemme ne signifie pas que les cultures africaines soient condamnées à disparaître en s'effaçant devant l'influence de l'occident. L'Afrique garde ses chances si elle est capable de faire une synthèse équilibrée des 2 mondes.

  • Mouhamadou Diagne
    2019-05-07 22:55

    It is the perfect encapsulation of the West African Muslim way of life. I still have not read another book that captures the differential impact of quranic education in a West African environment and Western education in Europe on a pupil who has been shaped by both. I definitely relate to this book and it remains one of my favorites. This is my third time reading it and I get something new out of it every time.

  • Thomas Schrepfer
    2019-04-28 00:38

    The cover was confusing, as I kept thinking I was already opening the book when I wasn't. When I figured it out (finally!) I was real edified by the contents. It's very current, you know. I hate myself.

  • Zoë
    2019-04-30 21:37

    I had some qualms with the translation, but the story is beautiful and sad. The book gives you an insight to the spirituality of Islam in Senegal, and the effects of colonialism on one community and boy.

  • Emily
    2019-04-28 19:38

    A story of the colonized versus the colonizers--West vs. East--Culture shock as seen through the eyes of Samba Diallo, an African who studies in Paris and loses parts of his identity in a mechanized and individualistic society. Good stuff.

  • Melinda
    2019-05-09 19:55

    This is a must-read! Simple, in the way Coehlo's "Alchemist" is simple, yet deeply philosophical. It was assigned reading for my undergrad Theology class and promoted some of the best discussions (in and outside of class.)

  • Vildan Arıcan
    2019-05-04 17:47

    That was the first time I have truly read my own culture within a western genre:)

  • Dana Kraft
    2019-05-11 18:55

    This book cuts right to the philosophical heart of the conflict between the colonizing West and Islamic Africa (at least west Africa). There is really no discussion of specific legal or colonial actions or policies on either side. The language is lyrical and philosophical, and there isn't a lot of literal "action" to convey. This made it tougher for me to read, but it also helped me focus more on the unique mindset of the African characters. That perspective was really interesting to me. It reminded me of the dangers of a dualistic mindset (us vs them, zero sum, winners/losers). This isn't a judgment on my part, just an observation as I've read several things about that recently. The main character's struggle with his faith also has some familiarity to it. One of his questions that really made me think was whether his doubts and struggles were just a part of him growing up or were part of a larger struggle for his people and his faith. No easy answers here. As part of my effort to read non-english fiction, this was a success b/c it presented a perspective that was local and unknown to me but also somewhat universal.

  • Sidinho Diaby
    2019-05-10 17:04

    L'aventure ambigue is an interesting book that tells the story of Samba Diallo. A young Diallobe boy who is among the first children of his village to attend a European school during the colonization a of Senegal. The culture of the Diallobes being very strict and religious, Samba Diallo found himself struggling to find a balance between his values as a Diallobe and the European values he learned at school. This book follow his journey as he tries to form his own values. The truth is that I didn't really like this book because I had the feeling that author prioritized the aesthetic rather than the content. Moreover, some of the monologues were too long and sometimes hard to follow. Finally, the ending felt incomplete. It seems like the author didn't answer any of the questions he raised in the book, and the only interpretation of it is too simplistic in my opinion.

  • Nick Duretta
    2019-05-07 20:37

    This parable-like novel of a young man trying to make sense of his nation's colonization is pretty heady stuff. Samba Diallo grows up torn between two cultures, that of his native land and that of its European colonizer. The countries are fictitious but the struggle isn't. Although this novel was written in 1962, the battle continues today, as cultural battles (infused, of course, with religion) flare into major conflicts. The conflict here is often seen as the confrontation of nature with a materialistic aggressor--over-simplified, perhaps, but then again, perhaps not. This was a bit too deep for a quick read, but it did make me think.

  • Suzanne Ondrus
    2019-05-04 20:46

    This book might pair well with showing the movie Poverty, Inc., or at least contribute a bit to its discussion. First the protagonist is at a Koranic school. He is a stellar student. I was touched by how the village elders wanted to send him to the Western school more out of despair, I guess with the aim of learning the tools of the oppressor, to learn how they got oppressed. Sadly one of the teachers says that "God has assured their [the white man] victory over us...because we...have offended Him"(10). "I have learned that in the country of the white man, the revolt against poverty and misery is not distinguished from the revolt against God. They say that the movement is spreading, and that soon, in the world, that same great cry against poverty will drown out the voice of the muezzins. What must have been the misbehavior of those who believe in God if, at the end of their reign over the world the name of God should arouse the resentment of the starving?"(10). -The Royal Lady convokes a meeting and invites the women, contrary to tradition. She says she "detests" the foreign school but thinks it is where they should send their children(41). "The school in which I would place our children will kill in them what today we love and rightly conserve with care. Perhaps the very memory of us will die in them. ...What I am proposing is that we should agree to die in our children's hearts and that the foreigners who have defeated us should fill the place, wholly, which we shall have left free"(41-42). She draws on the analogy of ploughing up fields and burning them which they do every year as the rainy season approaches, and she calls on the citizens to do this with the children, their future. -The whites "knew how to kill with effectiveness, they also knew how to cure, with the same art Where they had brought disorder, they established a new order. they destroyed and they constructed. On the black continent it began to be understood that their true power lay not in the cannons of the first morning, but rather in what followed the cannons"(44).-The protagonist while studying Philosophy in France reflects on his trip as an adventure. He believes if he becomes a "hybrid" then there will be shame. This hybrid could be an uncomplete metamorphosis and then shame results and one hides one's self out of shame. The pastor he is conversing with does not believe he will go this route (100).-Samba Diallo while at dinner with Gabonese discusses the difference he feels while living in the West. He feels he has lost his being and connection with the world: I have lost a privileged mode of acquaintance. In former times the world was like my father's dwelling: everything took em into the very essence of itself, as if nothing could exist except through me. The world was not silent and neuter. It was alive. it was aggressive. it spread out. No scholar ever had such knowledge of anything as I had, then, [while at Koranic school & living in Senegal] of being....Here now, the world is silent, and there is no longer any resonance from myself. I am like a broken balafong, ...I have the impression that nothing touches me any more (134).-More analysis of problem with the West: Samba Diallo says that it is "artificial, accidental. Only the artifice has grown stronger with time, covering up what is of nature." He says that what they Africans miss in the West is "that original nature where our identity bursts forth with theirs" He says that the whites conquering was an "accident" and the Africans' "most urgent task...is that of clearing the ground around nature. This task is ennobling"(137).SOLUTION: "...the West,...masters the object and colonizes us at the same time. If we do not awake the West to the difference which separates us from the object, we shall be worth no more than it [an object] is, and we shall never master it And our defeat will be the end of the last human being on this earth"(138).

  • Donovan Richards
    2019-04-20 19:41

    A Western-Centric EducationEnveloped in study during my college years, I often overlooked the narrow focus of my discipline. To me, philosophy meant the study of the question, “Why?” No matter the source of the question, philosophy dove deeper than a simple explanation. In retrospect, my program specifically dealt with analytical philosophy. As students, we dove into philosophy from a deductive approach, setting aside much of European existentialism and Eastern philosophy. While it may have seemed those angles were less worthwhile, we just didn’t focus on them. Understanding the narrow focus of my studies, I find the philosophical tension in Cheikh Hamidou Kane’s novel, Ambiguous Adventure intriguing. The Studies of Samba Diallo The story follows a young, Senegalese boy, Samba Diallo—a devout Muslim born and raised in the Diallobé country of Senegal. While in his homeland, Samba Diallo learns the culture, tradition, and faith of his people. At the behest of the Diallobé milieu, Samba attends college in Paris studying philosophy. For Samba—ever the excellent student—this opportunity allows him a chance to continue learning. For the Diallobé community, Samba’s encounter with the Western world will provide answers about the current political pressures the community encounters from all sides. “The men of the Diallobé wanted to learn ‘how better to join wood to wood.’ The mass of the country had made the reverse choice to that of the teacher. While the latter was setting at naught the stiffness of his joints, the pressure on his loins, setting his cabin at naught, and recognizing the reality only of Him toward Whom his thought mounted with delight at every instant, the people of the Diallobé were each day a little more anxious about the stability of their dwellings, the unhealthy state of their bodies. The Diallobé wanted more substance” (29).Tensions between Past and Present Yet, Samba’s studies carry consequences. The more he learns of the Western world, the less he associates himself with his Muslim faith and his cultural tradition. While never outright disowning his past, he finds the tension between past and present difficult to maintain.“The West is in process of overturning these simple ideas, of which we are part and parcel. They began, timidly, by relegating God to a place ‘between inverted commas.’ Then two centuries later, having acquired more assurance, they decreed, ‘God is dead.’ From that day dates the era of frenzied toil. Nietzsche is the contemporary of the industrial revolution. God was no longer there to measure and justify man’s activity. Was it not industry that did that? Industry was blind, although, finally, it was still possible to domicile all the good it produced… But already this phase is past… After the death of God, what they are now announcing is the death of man” (91).In the end, the more Samba learns, the more he realizes life is ambiguous. Pondering the Value of Broad-Ranging Study These conclusions resonate with my experience as a former philosophy student. Much like Samba, my philosophical studies carried an immensely Western influence. Whether intentional or unintentional, the program implies an inconsequential view of non-Western worldviews.Even though I greatly appreciate my education and credit it for sharpening my critical reasoning skills, I feel unbalanced. For this reason, I find immense value in reading non-Western views and rebalancing the way I comprehend the world. Ambiguous Adventure is a short-but-dense philosophical read. It doesn’t offer a fast moving plot, but its thought-provoking motifs offer much for a curious reader. If you are interested in non-Western views on life, check out Ambiguous Adventure. Originally published at http://www.wherepenmeetspaper.com

  • Jim
    2019-04-30 22:57

    This story has been told before and will, I have no doubt, be told again. It is an old story, the oldest some would say. I was not brought up a Muslim but I do understand fundamentalism and I doubt this book will do much to encourage anyone to take an interest in religion. The opening chapter is particularly upsetting, seeing a young boy tortured—there’s no other word for it—simply to ensure that he can recite a holy text by rote (and without understanding) without error. A part of me considered quitting the book very early on. But I persisted and thankfully we moved away from the classroom and onto bigger issues, whether or not to send children to religious teachers like this one or to, instead, allow them to attend the new schools which have been established by the country’s recent conquerors. A cousin of the boy takes the bull by the horn since the men seem to be dithering and makes a decision:“I have an elderly cousin,” he said, “in whose mind reality never loses its just claims. She has not yet emerged from the astonishment into which the defeat and colonization of the Diallobé plunged her. They call her the Most Royal Lady. I should have not gone to the foreign school, and I should not be here this evening, if it had not been for her desire to find an explanation for our defeat. The day I went to take leave of her she said to me again, ‘Go find out, among them, how one can conquer without being in the right.’ ” So the boy is enrolled in the foreign school and eventually leaves for France to take a degree in philosophy but before he’s completed his studies his father recalls him having decided he was wrong to let him go. Still the damage has been done. Despite having tried to be a good Muslim he returns home a changed man where he has to face his old teacher or at least his proxy, “the fool”, a man not unlike the boy (well, a young man by now) who had also travelled to the West but one who has seen the error of his ways and become something of a zealot. Needless to say they butt heads. The mindset here is very much one of either/or. There is no middle ground. The message is a simple one: that what the West has to offer costs too much, not in material terms but in spiritual ones. "Is what one learns worth what one forgets?" wonders our protagonist when in France. It’s a good question. But why can’t we have both, the best of both? Setting aside the religious aspect of the book we are also faced here with the whole issue of colonisation and how it corrupts (and frequently destroys) important cultures. It’s a good portrait of the “double consciousness” that W. E. B. Du Bois wrote about in his book, The Souls of Black Folk: “It is a peculiar sensation, this double-consciousness, this sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity. One ever feels his two-ness,—an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.”On the whole I wasn’t that fond of the style of writing in this book. I found it a little stiff and at times slow—the whole palaver about the French schools just dragged on I felt—but most of the exchanges were interested and I thought the ending was inspired although I can see why some didn’t care for it.

  • J.
    2019-04-19 23:02

    Methodical, ruminative coming-of-age tract played out against the backdrop of the developing world and its colonial counterparts. Kane looks at the way that colonized Africa has managed to wager its soul in the ongoing conflicts with the West, told here by a young Islamic scholar.Standard culture-clash, but really heartfelt and ready to delve into the most vulnerable areas of the dilemma. A couple of different frames are being placed around the simple narrative ---promising village boy deemed equal to an education in the West, goes abroad, risks everything in the encounter-- as Kane attempts to fit the young man into a broader context. The African side of the story, framed by Islam, is presented as visceral, immediate, and profoundly spiritual. In this frame each character is a semi-mythic persona, comprising a commedia dell'arte group of types, who dispense one sort of wisdom or another: we have the Knight, the Royal Lady, the Teacher, the Fool, etc. One of the most predominant ongoing frames is that of Philosophy, and indeed it is that which the protagonist will study when sent to France. Complicating the evolving observations, the deep cultural divide, and the general uproar of Youth is the presence, in study form, at least, of voices like Pascal, Descartes, Nietzsche and others from the Western canon. (And who go a long way toward creating havoc in the Faith-versus-Reason column, as if our hero hadn't got enough to absorb...) In the end, an incredibly wide-ranging set of themes to pull together, and in this translation, at least, no such thing ever happens. This should have been some troubling mash-up of Kafka's Metamorphosis, Camus' The Stranger and The Catcher In The Rye but --it wasn't to be. (For me, I loved the title, first and foremost. And the truth is, I imagined some kind of French-Senegalese co-production, crisply photographed in black & white, and dating from the nouvelle vague years. Instead, back to fucking René Descartes, the man who, in the course of a paragraph, a sentence, even, launched a million undergraduate naps ...)All isn't lost, though. The prose has a calm, righteous density that slows down the conclusion-jumping modern reader, and a quality and tempo that invites reflection ... These aren't trivial matters. This is a boy who is nearly a man, a believer who is nearly an apostate, and an exile who goes abroad only to find conflict with himself : " .. I am not a distinct country of the Diallobe facing a distinct Occident, and appreciating with a cool head what I must take from it, and what I must leave with it, by way of counter-balance. I have become the two. There is not a clear mind deciding between the two factors of a choice. There is a strange nature, in distress over not being two.”

  • James F
    2019-04-21 19:02

    A classic of Sénégalese literature, translated from the French. This is a philosophical "novel"; the plot can be summarized in four sentences: a child attends a Moslem school; a little bit older, he attends a "foreign" school; he goes to study philosophy in Paris; he returns to Sénégal. What the book is, is a series of conversations and monologues about the relations of traditional and Western culture. Essentially, it's a manifesto of "négritude", the prose equivalent of Léopold Sénghor's poetry. The difference is that the "négritude" of Kane is strongly permeated with Islam. The viewpoint here is anything but "ambiguous": Western culture is evil, materialistic and atheistic, and the Africans should resist it in the name of traditionalism, religion and spiritualism. This is a disturbing novel, just because this ideology is so prevalent; in different forms, it is the central idea of radical Islamism, and even in the "spiritual" tendencies in for example the Native American movement. It is hard for a progressive person in America to both oppose the imperialist enterprise and neo-colonialism, and at the same time to realize that the movements opposing Western domination are often based on traditional religious ideas which are anything but progressive -- witness the Taliban and ISIS today. The West has destroyed or weakened the cultural integrity of the colonized peoples, without providing any adequate substitute; the Western ideologies of Christianity and democracy are basically hypocritical when applied to the colonial world, and entwined with economic exploitation and political domination. Of course, these theories ignore the fact that the West has often reinforced the most backward traditional elements when it was in its interests to do so, as when the Islamicists were used against the nationalist regimes in the Middle East or to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan.Not an enjoyable novel to read, but one which casts light on important aspects of contemporary politics. The author was a cabinet minister and planning commissioner for the Sénégalese government after independence.

  • Koke
    2019-04-28 20:07

    في اليوم التالي تسلم سمبا جالو خطاب الفارسان رأي هو ان تعود ولا يهمني كثيرا ان تكون قد انهيت دراستك ام وصلت الي المرحله التي تريدلقد حان الوقت لعودتك كي تتعلم من جديد ان الله لا يقاس بشئ خصوصا التاريخ والذي لا تؤثر تحولاته في شئ من صفاته اعرف ان الغرب الذي اخطأت حين دفعتك الي مخالبه له رأي مغاير في هذا لكنني لا اشاطرهموه لا يوجد ادني رباط دم او نسب بين الله والانسان ليس منا من تمدد فروع شجرة نسبه لتصل الي اللهمن اجل هذا يبدو لي عدم شرعيه بناء الاعتذار علي التاريخ وعدم جدوي التشكي من الله بسبب شقاءنا وعندئذ لم يكون هذا التيه مهما كانت خطورته الذاتية ليقلقني لولا انك اعترفت في الوقت نفسه بقلق شخصي وعميق وتخشي ان يكون الله قد تخلي عنك لانك لم تعد تحس بحضوره معك بذلك الكمال الذي كنت عليه سابقا كما وعد المؤمنون به " ونحن اقرب اليه من حبل الوريد " فأنك بهذا لست بعيدا عن الاعتقاد تنه خانك لكن ألم تضع في الحسبان احتمال ان تكون انت من خان ومع ذلك لكن بدل من ذلك اجبني اتعطي الله كل ما يستحقة من مكانة في افكارك وافعالك اتجتهد في جعل افكارك في انسجام مع شرعه .؟ليس المطلوب مبايعته مرة واحدة ان تنطق بالشهادة الكبري نظريا وكفي انما المطلوب هو ان تجتهد في مواءمه كل خلجه من افكارك بما تعلقه من منهجة أتفعل ؟كنت اعتقد اني علمتك بما يكفي لجعلك مؤهلا لممارسه العبادات الغرب الذي تعيش فيه يظن ان الله يهب ويسترد الايمان كيف شاء فلن اناقش وجهه النظر هذه والتي اشاركهما في الاقتتاع بها لكن اعتقد كذلك ان الله الخالق من العظمة بحيث لا شئ يعجزة حتي اختيارنا الحر الثابت ان نجاتك بيديك وتتمثل في استحضار عظمه الله الحي يمكنك تحصيل ذلك شريطه التزام منهجه الذي اودعه في دينه نصا وروحا وبكل صرامه لكن الذي يحدث تحديدا هنا حين لا يكون ثمه مجال للتفلسف ان تكبو العقول الوقادة بشكل مزر وتنغرز في الرمال فأنت الذي تملك عقلا جبارا تتطلع الي معرفه الله تدعي انك تسجل عليه خطأ دعني فقط اسألك أتعرف المحجة الي المسجد ؟ ستجد مولاك حين تنشده بأخبات كما وعد العاملين حتي حين لا نري الاثرالمغامرة الغامضة شيخ حامد كان

  • Kogiopsis
    2019-05-06 20:44

    This was book one of four assigned for my Oral Traditions and Performance in African Lit course this semester (which I've come to just call African Lit, as it's much more generalist than its title would suggest) and, like the other three, Ambiguous Adventure was a complex but totally worthwhile read. (None of the books we've read can really be called enjoyable, as their content tends to skew to very heavy issues and experiences, but personally I've liked all of them.)The story here is, essentially, that of two people: Samba Diallo, a young Senegalese boy who will eventually travel to France to study, and the Thierno who teaches the traditional Islamic school which he attends as a child. Early on, their narratives are intertwined, and the story focuses on Samba's intense spiritual potential. When he leaves home for the city, and then for France, the Thierno's story continues in parallel, showing how life progresses in the village - and how Samba's absence impacts it, as instead of becoming heir to either his uncle the chief or to the Thierno, he grows more and more distant from his family, Islam, and their traditions.It's very much a story about separation made inexorable by colonization and the power dynamics thus laid down. Samba Diallo fits seamlessly into traditional ways, but because of changes in the world around them his family decides to send him away to learn so that they can keep up. The end result, though, is that exposure to a different culture changes his relationship with his home and the people in it. As they say, you can't go home again.Worth a read if you're interested in African perspectives on colonialism, which everyone really should be.

  • Matías Pérez Ojeda Del Arco
    2019-05-10 21:49

    Narra esa angustia y ambiguedad creada por el choque de la tradición con la modernidad occidental/colonización, y suelta esas cuestiones punzantes y necesarias sobre el qué hacer para sobrevivir, del sacrificio individual y colectivo, del quién soy yo y qué o quién es mi pueblo, si es que acaso somos los dos juntos o sepadados, si es acaso esa ambiguedad un regalo/castigo/necesidad solo para quienes cruzaron el charco y que aquellos nacidos en la diáspora no conocerán, o y si es que en esa ambiguedad de sujetos-pueblos divididos entre tradición/modernidad, se juega el futuro del mundo/los mundos ...en fin, una bestia de novela, prosa, y entrada al fascinante mundo del impacto, contextualizado en el Sénegal.

  • Frank
    2019-04-30 21:07

    Un libro sul colonialismo e le diverse concezioni della vita tra africani ed europei. La visione dei primi, con il Dio sempre presente per tradizione (anche imposta) è molto lontana dal mio personale punto di vista, ma il giudizio non è influenzato da questo aspetto. Il mio giudizio abbastanza basso per questo che è considerato un capolavoro della scrittura africana, è dovuto soprattutto dalla struttura del libro. Scritto come un romanzo, in realtà è più un "saggio dialogato"; ci sono aspetti di sociologia, con la diversa cultura dei popoli; momenti di difficoltà, come al momento di decidere se far seguire ai figli la tradizionale scuola coranica oppure la nuova scuola degli stranieri (più formativa a livello personale la prima, con più porte aperte sul lato materiale la seconda). Il tutto porta anche problemi esistenziali. In generale è stata interessante la parte di commento-analisi riportata al termine del racconto.

  • Hannah Rasmussen
    2019-05-09 23:56

    A young Senegalese student embodies the tension between French colonial influence and his local Islamic thought as he grows up. This book was deeply philosophical - I feel like I need to read a history of Senegal, the Q'uran, Pascal and Descartes before I can understand the full context of the debate Kane was participating in. Apparently the high vocabulary level and descriptive writing style intended to mimic the Q'uran, which makes a lot of sense. Despite all this, I read the book in a day - the characters, dialogue and plot were engaging and often surprising - plus the story is very short. I recommend this book to people interested in philosophy, religion, colonialism, or African authors.