Monday, September 24, 2012

Stories of Struggle, Stories of Hope: Art, Politics, and Human Rights

A topic that is not often discussed at the Alaska World Affairs Council’s typical events is that of our common humanity. What, though, is more worldly and more related to our international relationships than that which unites us? In his TED Talk (which can be viewed below), Chris Abani discusses what makes up our humanity, and how the people he has known in his life have taught him the importance of the human relationship.


Chris Abani is a Nigerian poet and novelist. As a young man, Abani wrote a spy novel about a foiled coup that incidentally mirrored a real-life attempted coup against the Nigerian government. Accused of laying out the blueprint for the attempted coup, Abani was imprisoned in Nigeria at the age of 18. Although he was released, he was later arrested and tortured twice more. Abani directs his experiences into his writing, resulting in “searing poetry” and poignant novels, all the while maintaining an optimistic view on life.

During his lecture on October 5th, which is sponsored by UAA Student Activities, Chris Abani will be discussing human stories of struggle and hope, and how art, politics, and human rights intertwine. The lecture will be held on at 7:30 p.m. in the UAA Student Union Den. Admission is free for all, and there is no need to RSVP.

For more information, visit the event’s facebook page.

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