Sunday, August 20, 2017

Vitabu Nilivyonunua Leo

Leo nilikwenda uwanja wa ndege wa Minneapolis. Wakati wa kurudi, nilipitia Apple Valley nikaingia katika duka la Half Price Books, kama ilivyo kawaida yangu.  Sikukaa sana humo, bali nilinunua vitabu viwili.

Kimoja ni America and Americans and Selected Nonfiction ambacho ni mkusanyo wa maandishi ya John Steinbeck, ambao umehaririwa na Susan Shillinglaw na Jackson J. Benson. Baada ya kukiangalia, nilivutiwa nacho kwa sabababu sikuwa na kitabu hicho wala sikuwa nimefuatilia habari za Steinbeck kiasi cha kujua kuwa aliandika sana katika tasnia ya "nonfiction." Nilichojua zaidi ni kuwa alikuwa mwandishi wa riwaya. Steinbeck si mwandishi mgeni kwangu, kama nilivyowahi kuandika katika blogu hii.

Sababu ya pili ya kukinunua kitabu hiki ni kuwa nilivutiwa na taarifa kwamba Steinbeck anawaongelea wa-Marekani. Mimi mwenyewe nimekuwa nikifanya hivyo, hasa tangu nichapishe kitabu changu kiitwacho Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences. Kwenye ukurasa wa nyuma wa hiki kitabu cha Steinbeck, niliona nukuu ambayo ilinivutia sana:

For centuries America and Americans have been the target for opinions--Asian, African, and European--only these opinions have been called criticism, observation, or, God help us, evaluation. Unfortunately, Americans have allowed these foreign opinions the value set on them by their authors. This essay is not an attempt to answer or refute these sausage-like propaganda which is ground out in our disfavour....But at least it is informed by America, and inspired by curiosity, impatience, some anger, and a passionate love of America and Americans. For I believe that out of the whole body of our past, out of our differences, our quarrels, our many interests and directions, something has emerged that is itself unique in the world: America--complicated, paradoxical, bullheaded, shy, cruel, boisterous, unspeakably dear, and very beautiful.

Kitabu cha pili nilichonunua ni Running with the Bulls: My Years With the Hemingways, kilichoandikwa na Valerie Hemingway. Huyu alikuwa sekretari wa Ernest Hemingway na alisafiri na Hemingway na mke wake Mary Hispania na Ufaransa, akaishi nao miezi ya mwisho ya Hemingway Cuba. Baada ya kifo cha Hemingway, Valerie aliolewa na Gregory, mtoto wa Hemingway, ambaye ni mdogo wa Patrick Hemingway, ambaye ninawasiliana naye.

Nina vitabu kadhaa vya wanafamilia wa Ernest Hemingway. Hiki cha Valerie sikuwa nacho. Ninategemea kujifunza mengi kutokana na mwandishi huyu ambaye ni mmoja wa wale waliofahamu sana habari kuhusu familia ya Hemingway.

2 comments:

Emmanuel Kachele said...

Safi sana Profesa Mbele. Ni mara nyingi sana huwa nasoma hizi post zako kuhusu kununua vitabu. Sio siri unanitamanisha sana. Niko Mkoa wa Pembezoni kabisa mwa Tanzania, na kila nikisoma hizo post huwa nawaza sana kama na jamiii yetu ingekuwa na mazingira rahisi ya upatikanaji wa vitabu kama ulio nao huko. Ninatamani sana tena sana.
Lakini labda unaweza kuwa na njia fulani ya kuisaidia nchi yetu na jamii yetu kwa ujumla ili iweze kupata vitabu hadi vijijini kama huku niliko.

Asante sana Profeso.

Mbele said...

Ndugu Emmanuel Kachele, shukrani kwa ujumbe. Pole kwa tatizo la kukosekana vitabu. Lakini ninasikia kuwa kuna uwezekano wa watu huko Tanzania kununua vitabu pepe mtandaoni. Ninafahamu kuwa viko vingi vinavyopatikana kwa mtindo huo, vingi vya bure. Sijui kama njia hii inawezekana mahali ulipo.

Kuhusu kusaidia nchi, binafsi, niliwahi kujiwekea utaratibu wa kukusanya na kupeleka vitabu Tanzania, nikafanya hivyo kwa vyuo kadhaa. Hatimaye, wa-Tanzania wanadiaspora wa jumuia ya mtandao wa Tanzanet walinichangia dola 500, kusaidia usafirishaji wa hivi vitabu, kwani kabla nilikuwa ninajitolea mwenyewe. Vile vile, kila ninapofika Tanzania ninabeba vitabu angalau vichache kwa ajili ya taasisi mbali mbali.