Over centuries of contact with the west, Africa has suffered the deprivations of slavery, colonialism, and globalization. An integral part of this tragic encounter has been Europhonism: the replacement of native names and language systems with European ones. Language is a communal memory bank. In losing its native languages, Africa would lose its social memory--its very identity. Acclaimed novelist and critic Ngugi wa Thiong'o traces the arc of Africa's fragmentation and restoration amidst the global history of colonialism and modernity. Seeking a revitalization of Africa, Ngugi argues that a renaissance of African languages is a necessary step in the restoration of African wholeness. Wide-ranging, erudite, and hopeful, Something Torn and New is Ngugi's cri de doeur to save Africa's cultural identity in the modern world. Soft Cover.