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  • Locating Chronic Violence: Billy Kahora’s “How to Eat a Forest”

    Ashleigh Harris

    Chapter from the book: Helgesson, S et al. 2018. World Literatures: Exploring the Cosmopolitan-Vernacular Exchange.

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    This chapter considers the ways in which African environmentalist fiction orients itself both outwards (towards a global readership in the interests of mobilizing an environmental politics) and inwards (towards the lived scales upon which environmental depletion is most acutely felt). This has consequences for both the material production and distribution processes and the aesthetic forms of this fiction. This chapter posits that the aesthetic and material innovations of Billy Kahora’s multi-genre text, ‘How to Eat a Forest’ are codetermining factors of his environmentalism. I argue that Kahora’s interweaving of aesthetics and material production enables him to address both the global and local scales of what Rob Nixon calls ‘slow violence’: that is, the global forces that are decimating African natural resources and are registered, first, in the lived scales of the everyday.

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    Harris, A. 2018. Locating Chronic Violence: Billy Kahora’s “How to Eat a Forest”. In: Helgesson, S et al (eds.), World Literatures. Stockholm: Stockholm University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16993/bat.j

    This is an Open Access chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (unless stated otherwise), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright is retained by the author(s).

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    Published on Nov. 22, 2018


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