African Book Club | Are You Borg Now? by Said Shaiye
THE AFRICAN BOOK CLUB @ MOAD
An ongoing series in partnership with Faith Adiele. March’s book selection is Are You Borg Now? by Said Shaiye. The author Said Shaiye will be joining the event for the discussion.
How to participate: Get a copy of the book, read it in advance of the meeting, and then discuss the book with a group of people interested in reading African literature online via zoom on March 27th at 12:00 PM (PST). After you register you will receive information to join via zoom. If you don’t see an email from MoAD, check your spam or junk mail box.
Are You Borg Now? is available for purchase online at the MoAD bookstore. Author Said Shaiye is also the Featured Poet at Open Mic Night on March 17th at 6pm PST.
You can view a list of all the books previously read and discussed in African Book Club, and if you order through bookshop, MoAD will receive a percentage of the sale: https://bookshop.org/lists/african-book-club
Hosted by Faith Adiele, Author, Professor & Co-Founder of African Book Club
About the Book
“You gotta find reflections of yourself however you can to survive this country,” writes Said Shaiye in this innovative AF (Afrofuturist) memoir. Are You Borg Now cyphers with trauma through a poetics of refusal via hard and beautiful language. Finding vigor in Islam and mirrors in Star Trek: Voyager, Shaiye shifts achingly between memory and improvisation. This is a serious debut.”
-Douglas Kearney, Author of Sho
“Are You Borg now? heralds the arrival of a bold and important voice. Shaiye’s deeply personal self-interrogation blurs genre and form to examine how intersections between culture, race, class, gender and nationality shape one’s identity. Vulnerable, affecting, humorous and haunting, so often I clutched my chest and nodded in agreement to Shaiye’s keen observations. The reflections collected in these pages will benefit all who read this book.”
-Donald Quist, Author of Harbors & For Other Ghosts
“Why should one write? This is the question that pervades Said Shaiye’s experimental approach to memoir in Are You Borg Now? This book offers many different kinds of answers to such a question, answers that involve facing the effects of trauma and violence with courage, honesty, and a willingness to risk vulnerability. One reason to write is to call forth a voice in solidarity with others who suffer. Shaiye is a writer who transforms the pain of alienation into beautifully lyric writing and from that writing springs a profound faith that one is never really alone.”
-Kathryn Nuernberger, author of The Witch of Eye
“This book cut me as it wowed me. Shaiye can’t help it. He invites you in. But he doesn’t want you there. He doesn’t want to be there himself, but needs to be. On every page, I found a reflection of an America that sickens and alienates with its easy fast food and easy pop culture. But then, Shaiye recognizes quality, too. And you recognize yourself in it even as you gain Shaiye’s very particular viewpoint. Every page you find Shaiye struggling to be okay, to be good, to both honor his culture and struggle to move it forward towards health. This is an honorable project. This is a courageous project. This is the Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man.”
-Geoff Herbach, Award Winning Author of Hooper & Stupid Fast
About the Author
Said Shaiye is an Austic Somali writer from Seattle who now lives in Minneapolis. He is an MFA Candidate & Graduate Instructor at the University of Minnesota. He has published poetry & prose in 580 Split, Entropy, Diagram, Rigorous, and elsewhere. His debut book, Are You Borg Now?, was released by Really Serious Literature. It’s an experimental memoir with elements of poetry, self-interview, photography & more. He can be reached at www.saidshaiye.com