ABANI GRACELAND PDF

Elvis Oke lives in one of the most notorious and squalid ghettos of Lagos, he makes a living as an impersonator of his namesake, Elvis Presley. The book starts with Oke in Lagos, living with his father and step-mother. Oke had lived in the village of Afpiko before his mothers death and the book shifts between the two periods- his time in the village and his subsequent move to the city of Lagos. In Lagos, Oke lives with his alcoholic father and his rude step-mother who does not care for him. In addition to being an Elvis impersonator, Oke dabbles in a number of jobs, often illegal and dangerous. He is a good dancer and performs on the streets in order to earn money.

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Elvis Oke lives in one of the most notorious and squalid ghettos of Lagos, he makes a living as an impersonator of his namesake, Elvis Presley. The book starts with Oke in Lagos, living with his father and step-mother. Oke had lived in the village of Afpiko before his mothers death and the book shifts between the two periods- his time in the village and his subsequent move to the city of Lagos. In Lagos, Oke lives with his alcoholic father and his rude step-mother who does not care for him.

In addition to being an Elvis impersonator, Oke dabbles in a number of jobs, often illegal and dangerous. He is a good dancer and performs on the streets in order to earn money. Oke biggest dream is leave the ghetto and make a better life for himself.

Back in Afpiko Oke lived a different life. He was very close to his mother, Beatrice who always told him that he could achieve anything he wanted. Oke runs away from home one day but he is kidnapped by thieves. The thieves are involved in the child trafficking racket in Lagos and they take him to an old and abandoned dungeon where they beat him and abuse him.

Oke however manages to escape with his life. Now he is even more determined to leave Lagos for good. Oke goes to Redemption in need of money and a place to live. The jobs Oke and Redemption do together are dangerous and immoral, Oke is troubled and his conscience tugs at him.

Whilst working with Redemption Oke meets the King of Beggars, a one eyed old man. The man always seems to know what dangerous activities Oke is up to.

Sunday is killed by a bulldozer during one of the protests. Oke feels conflicting emotions on hearing about his fathers death. Towards the end of the novel, Oke procures a passport from Redemption.

He tells the immigration official that he is Redemption and finally leaves Lagos. Update this section!

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Chris Abani

Here is what Abani tells Tayari Jones about the scene in an April interview in The Believer when she asks for his thoughts on "global blackness". Jones is African American, but spent a year in Nigeria when her father was a Fulbright scholar there. I grew up conflicted about this whole notion [of global blackness]. Especially about Pan-Africanism. But it is interesting that these guys were educated mostly in America. These guys had contact with Du Bois and Marcus Garvey long before they came back. You can see this link much more in music.

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GraceLand Summary

Plot summary[ edit ] Set in the Nigerian city of Lagos, GraceLand is the story of a teenage boy named Elvis Oke, who is trying to escape the poverty of his community. Starting out as an Elvis Presley impersonator, he takes on a wide variety of jobs, many of which place him in criminal situations. The novel jumps between two settings, the village of Afikpo from until , and Lagos from and onward. In Lagos, Elvis is torn between the influences of two characters: his friend Redemption, and the self-proclaimed King of Beggars. The King of Beggars, on the other hand, attempts to direct Elvis to a different path.

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