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The same can be said of Camara Laye's earliest work, The African Child, and his His first novel, Le docker nair (The Black Docker), published in , was in. The Dark Child book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. The Dark Child is a distinct and graceful memoir of Camara Laye's y. The Dark Child by Camara Laye. Get The Dark Child from Amazon. Word · Buy and download The Dark Child Study Guide PDF. Tweet about The Dark Child.

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This informative book: The Dark Child by Camara Laye, is the Autobiography of an Download and Read Free Online The Dark Child Laye Camara, Camara Laye The Dark Child by Laye Camara, Camara Laye Free PDF d0wnl0ad, audio. Camara. Laye. BORN. , Guinea,. Africa. Died in. Senegal at age NONFICTION SELECTION >> THE DARK CHILD by Camara Laye. [This book] is a memoir of [the author's] youth in the village of Koroussa, French Guinea, a place steeped in mystery. [He] marvels over his mother's supernatural powers, his father's distinction as the village goldsmith, and his own passage into manhood, which is marked by.

Citations The Dark Child is Camara Laye's autobiography, tracing the development of his cultural and personal values as a young man coming of age within the Malinke tribe of Upper Guinea during the 's. No where in his autobiography do we see evidence of the primitive, dark, "uncivilized" culture of Africa as depicted in classic colonial works like Conrad's Heart of Darkness, but instead encounter a quiet, solid, emotionally-scaffolded narrative, in the context of sophisticated nonfiction that calmly relays milestones in the author's childhood and young adult experience. Both the supernatural realm and traditional Muslim religion are depicted as minor characters orchestrating Laye's evolution from young boy to "adult male" and provide a rich backstory to the narrative. One of the more poignant descriptions in the book occurs about midway through the biography, with Laye's tale of his tribal initiation into manhood by enduring the circumcision ritual during his earlier teen approximately years. He participates in a festival consisting of public and private ceremonies for "several days" and later a period of physical healing and recovery from the circumcision itself for over one month Laye ,

The Dark Child Summary & Study Guide

His mother is of another clan whose totem is the crocodile. While people fear to fetch water from the river infested with crocodiles, she does so and none touches her.


Laye grows up alternating homes between Tindican and Kouroussa. There he and his age mates watch over the fields, harvest rice and graze animals. Laye starts school, first in a Moslem school and then at a French school. At one point, Laye and his friend Koyate are bullied by the big boys at school but that comes to an end when his father beats up the headmaster.

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Away from school, Laye undergoes circumcision, a key ritual in many parts of Africa signifying the passage into manhood. For Laye, the circumcision transforms him into a grown man, and he begins to stay in his own hut.

He stays with his uncle Mamadou, and his two aunts. Every holiday he goes back home. Laye cannot explain this mystery, but knows it to be true.

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Likewise, Laye claims that his mother has special powers, and that people seek her out when they're in distress because they count on her great faith and virtue. As a child, Laye loves to visit his grandmother, uncles and cousins in the countryside.

As a city boy, he is enthralled with the wild animals and open space he finds in the country. He loves to watch the workers harvest rice and feels proud when he gets to help.

The Dark Child by Camara Laye

However, he knows early in his life that he will not be a laborer. Laye describes in detail the rites of passage undergone by the village boys. A devout Muslim, Laye fully participates in these rites, though he admits that he doesn't understand all of the symbolism and tradition behind the rites. He does feel, however, that the ceremony and rituals instill bravery and confidence in him.

As Laye grows, he excels in school. In his teens, he is sent to Conakry, a coastal city in Guinea, where he attends a technical school. He stays with his mother's brother during the weekends and is treated like a son by this uncle. While at school he suffers a sickness that hospitalizes him for months.

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