Zami: A New Spelling of my Name - Penguin Modern Classics (Paperback)
  • Zami: A New Spelling of my Name - Penguin Modern Classics (Paperback)
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Zami: A New Spelling of my Name - Penguin Modern Classics (Paperback)

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£9.99
Paperback 320 Pages
Published: 05/07/2018
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Waterstones Says

Lorde’s first and only novel Zami was classed a “biomythography”, which combines myth, history, and biography through a narrative form, detailing her childhood in New York City, and navigating life as a black lesbian in 1950s America. This book is an ode to intersectionality, and Lorde will remain someone whose work we must learn from for centuries to come.

If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.

A little black girl opens her eyes in 1930s Harlem. Around her, a heady swirl of passers-by, car horns, kerosene lamps, the stock market falling, fried bananas, tales of her parents' native Grenada. She trudges to public school along snowy sidewalks, and finds she is tongue-tied, legally blind, left behind by her older sisters.

On she stumbles through teenage hardships - suicide, abortion, hunger, a Christmas spent alone - until she emerges into happiness: an oasis of friendship in Washington Heights, an affair in a dirty factory in Connecticut, and, finally, a journey down to the heat of Mexico, discovering sex, tenderness, and suppers of hot tamales and cold milk.

This is Audre Lorde's story. It is a rapturous, life-affirming tale of independence, love, work, strength, sexuality and change, rich with poetry and fierce emotional power.

'Zami is important because of its descriptions of growing up a black lesbian feminist in the 1950s, with open, unapologetic, vivid descriptions of women's relationships' - The Guardian 

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
ISBN: 9780241351086
Number of pages: 320
Weight: 236 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 18 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

I came across Audre Lorde's Zami, and I cried to think how lucky I was to have found her. She was an inspiration. At last I felt I fitted in. - Jackie Kay

Excellent and evocative... personal honesty and lack of pretentiousness shine through the writing. Her experiences are painted with exquisite imagery - The New York Times

Zami is important because of its descriptions of growing up a black lesbian feminist in the 1950s, with open, unapologetic, vivid descriptions of women's relationships - Guardian

Her work is so quotable. It has the zeitgeist factor. Now, just as much as ever, we need the voice of Audre Lorde - New Statesman

I have an Audre Lorde google alert on my phone. It helps confirm how relevant my favorite black, lesbian, mother, warrior poet remains today - Huffington Post

Audre Lorde says it best - Refinery29

Lorde's examination of her multiple outsiderness pried my sheltered mind wide open - Alison Bechdel, author of Fun Home (in ‘My Ten Favorite Books,’ New York Times Magazine)

Zami is just the best - Vice

Zami made me realise that I was not alone ... that I, too, could be as courageous and as loud with my truths - Elle Magazine

Zami feels larger than life - almost legendary - while remaining grounded, intimate and moving - Cosmopolitan

The truth of her writing is as necessary today as it's ever been - Guardian

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“Memoir at it's Best”

The quality of writing in Lorde's autobiography gives a good indication of how eloquent her essays and poetry are. Her accounts of growing up under the oppression of racism and grappling with her emerging status... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 37
Katy Wheatley

“An Incredible Book”

I'd only ever read Audre Lorde's poetry before. Black Unicorn is blisteringly brilliant but this autobiographical account of her life from childhood to truly belonging to herself as an adult is sublime.... More

Paperback edition
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