Contributors

Adetokunbo Abiola
Nigerian journalist and writer. Published the novel, Labulabu Mask, with Macmillan Nigeria. Published short stories in magazines, notably BBC Focus on Africa magazine and Flask Review, while Sage of Consciousness Review has accepted a story. Also writes poetry and drama, as well as being an amateur photographer. Currently working on short story collection.

Alaa Kadhim al-Jabiri
Born in 1979 in Baghdad. An Iraqi government employee and a student at Baghdad’s University of Mustansiriya, College of Arts, Department of Philosophy. A poet, short story writer, and newspaper columnist. He is married and has three children.

Bruce Allen
Assistant Professor of English at Juntendo University in Japan.  He writes about about environmental literature and has focused particularly on the work of Michiko Ishimure. His translation of her novel Lake of Heaven will be published by Lexington Books in Fall 2008.

Kim Alphandary
An artist and freelance journalist whose work appears in NarcoNews, Columbia Report, Insurgent American and Z Magazine. Kim specializes in U.S. foreign policy in Latin America and Central Asia.

Appalachian Author
Liberation Lit would like to learn the identity of the author of “Please Attack Appalachia.” (Mike Bryan sent the satire to Common Dreams where it was apparently first published. We have been unable to recontact Mike Bryan or recall the name of the author….)

Doreen Baingana
Author of Tropical Fish: Stories out of Entebbe, which won a Commonwealth Prize in 2006, among others. She considers Kenya one of her literary homes.

Simiyu Barasa
Kenyan filmmaker and writer. He was Writer/Director of the Feature film ‘Toto Millionaire’ (2007) and has written for numerous Kenyan dramas like Makutano Junction, Tahidi High and Wingu la Moto. He was on the Editorial Board of Kwani? 3, Kenya’s literary journal, and his fiction has appeared in Africa Fresh: Voices from the First Continent. His opinions have appeared on NewYork Times, Nigerian Guardian, and South African Southern Times.

Frida Berrigan
Senior Research Associate with the Arms Trade Resource Center of the World Policy Institute. A graduate of Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, Frida worked with a Central America solidarity organization for two years before coming to the World Policy Institute. Maintaining an interest in U.S. foreign policy towards Latin America, she also focuses on nuclear weapons policy, weapons sales to areas of conflict particularly in SE Asia, and military training programs. Most recently she has published articles in the Providence Journal, the Nonviolent Activist and the Hartford Courant.

Ernest Callenbach
Writer and editor best known for his visionary novel Ecotopia, a political and environmental classic that has sold almost a million copies. Other books include Living Cheaply With Style, Ecotopia Emerging, and Ecology: A Pocket Guide. Coauthor (with Michael Phillips) of A Citizen Legislature, and of Eco-Management: The Elmwood Guide to Ecological Auditing and Sustainable Business. He founded the critical journal Film Quarterly in 1958 at the University of California Press and served as its editor until 1991. Lives in Berkeley, California. His website is ernestcallenbach.com.

Laura Carlsen
Director of the IRC Americas Program in Mexico City, where she has been a writer and political analyst for more than two decades.

Cari Carpenter
Professor of English at West Virginia University; author of Seeing Red: Anger, Sentimentality, and American Indians; an active member of Appalachian Prison Book Project.

Tony Christini
Cofounder and Coeditor of Mainstay Press and Liberation Lit journal, weblog A Practical Policy. His fiction, poetry, criticism have appeared: (print) The Texas Observer, The South Carolina Review, The South Dakota Review, Soundings East, and elsewhere; (online) Pemmican, ZNet, Counterpunch…

Kevin Doyle
Novelist and short story writer from Cork, Ireland.  His stories have appeared in journals such as The Cúirt Journal, Stinging Fly, Southwords and in publications such as Irish Writers Against The War. Has recently completed a novel entitled An Employee Was Fatally Injured. Regularly contributes to Indymedia (Ireland) and has also written widely about anarchism and the libertarian tradition.

Mike Eldon
Member of Concerned Citizens for Peace.

Joe Emersberger
A writer living in Canada with an interest in Haiti. Co-editor of HaitiAnalysis.com. Contributor of articles to ZNet and Narco News.

Tom Engelhardt
Created and runs the Tomdispatch.com website, a project of The Nation Institute where he is a Fellow. He is the author of a highly praised history of American triumphalism in the Cold War, The End of Victory Culture, and of a novel, The Last Days of Publishing, as well as a collection of his Tomdispatch interviews, Mission Unaccomplished. Each spring he is a Teaching Fellow at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley. Tomdispatch.com is the sideline that ate his life. Before that he worked as an editor at Pacific News Service in the early 1970s, and, these last three decades, as an editor in book publishing. For 15 years, he was Senior Editor at Pantheon Books where he edited and published award-winning works ranging from Art Spiegelman’s Maus and John Dower’s War Without Mercy to Eduardo Galeano’s Memory of Fire trilogy. He is now Consulting Editor at Metropolitan Books, as well as co-founder and co-editor of Metropolitan’s The American Empire Project.

Shelley Ettinger
Work in Nimrod, Cream City Review, Stone Canoe, Mississippi Review, Mizna, Word Is Bond and other journals. Awarded fellowships to the Saltonstall Foundation Arts Colony in 2008 and the Lambda Literary Foundation LGBT writers’ retreat in 2007. Recently completed her first novel and is at work on a second novel and a collection of short fiction. A longtime trade unionist and activist in social-justice movements, Shelley works at New York University where she is a member of the clerical workers’ union AFT Local 3882. Read Red (http://readwritered.blogspot.com/) is her blog about literature and the class struggle.

Dayo Forster
A novelist whose first book, Reading the Ceiling, was published by Simon and Schuster in 2007. She lives in Nairobi where she also works part-time as a financial sector development consultant.

Stanley Gazemba
Trained as a journalist. Lives in Kangemi, Nairobi. Writes for Sunday Nation and Msanii Magazine (Published by RAMOMA). Author of the novel The Stone Hills of Maragoli, which won the 2003 Jomo Kenyatta Prize for Literature. Author of 5 childrens’ books: Poko at the Koras, Poko and the Jet, Shaka Zulu, The Herdsboy and the Princess, and Tobi and the Street boy. Attended the Caine Prize Writers’ workshop in Cape Town, South Africa in 2003. A fellow at the Breadloaf Writers’ Conference, Vermont, USA in 2007. Member of Concerned Kenyan Writers.

Shalini Gidoomal
Kenya-born journalist and writer who has worked extensively for a variety of UK national newspapers and magazines including the Independent, News of the World, Today, Architectural Digest, GQ and FHM, and has contributed short stories to various anthologies including Kwani 04 and two Caine Prize anthologies. She is a member of Concerned Kenyan Writers, Concerned Concerned Citizens for Peace, and is editorial co-ordinator for GenerationKenya 45.

Theodore A. Harris
Collagist, poet, and mural painter. His visual art, poetry, and manifestos have appeared in publications such as; Real News, Long Shot, The Hammer, Unity & Struggle, New Letters, Ratta Pallax, Paterson Literary Review, Switch Blade, AMEN (published in Madrid), Left Curve, AWOL, Heart, The Gaither Reporter, African American Review, Black Renaissance Noire, Quarterly Black Book Review, XCP: Cross Cultural Poetics, Callaloo, Common Roots Common Ground, WHAT IF?, The Other Side, Cal Literary Arts Magazine, Tangent, Theatre Journal, Souls, X Mag, African Voices, Nommo, Radical Society, boundary 2, South Atlantic Quarterly, Chain, Fiction International, 1913, Temple University Faculty Herald, and in many anthologies. Mr. Harris’ work has been exhibited in solo, traveling, and group shows through out the U.S. His work is collected in private and public collections such as the Saint Louis University Museum of Art, Center for Africana Studies University of Pennsylvania,  and Lincoln University. Mr. Harris has lectured on his work at Colleges and Universities such as Haverford College, Stanford University, Saint Louis University, University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, Hammonds House Museum and Resource Center for African American Art among others.

William T. Hathaway
Adjunct professor of American studies at the University of Oldenburg in Germany. His latest book, Radical Peace: People Refusing War, presents the experiences of peace activists who have moved beyond demonstrations and petitions into direct action, defying the government’s laws and impeding its ability to kill. Chapters are posted on a page of the publisher’s website at http://media.trineday.com/radicalpeace. He is also the author ofSummer Snow, the story of an American warrior in Central Asia who falls in love with a Sufi Muslim and learns from herthat higher consciousness is more effective than violence. Chapters are available at www.peacewriter.org.

Ishimure Michiko
She has often been referred to as the “Rachel Carson of Japan”. Her bestselling book Paradise in the Sea of Sorrow: Our Minamata Disease (Kugai jodo; waga minamata byo, 1972) alerted many Japanese to the dangers of industrial pollution and shaped the conscience of a generation of politically and environmentally aware writers and activists. Ishimure has gone on to develop the Minamata story into a trilogy. She has also written a wide range of poetry, essays, novels, and noh drama and is the recipient of several international literary prizes as well as Japan’s Asahi Prize and the Philippines’ Magsaysay Prize. She continues to be involved with the struggle for the rights of Minamata victims, and for the rights of other victims of prejudice and modernization. Her 1997 novel Lake of Heaven (in Japanese, Tenko) will be published in English by Lexington Books in Fall 2008.

Ron Jacobs
The author of the first comprehensive history
of the Weather Underground – The Way the Wind Blew: A History of the Weather Underground. His articles, essays and reviews have appeared in Counterpunch, Monthly Review, Monthly Review Zine, Alternative Press Review, Berlin Jungle World, Works in Progress, State of Nature, and elsewhere.

Dahr Jamail
In late 2003, weary of the overall failure of the US media to accurately report on the realities of the war in Iraq for the Iraqi people and US soldiers, Dahr Jamail went to Iraq to report on the war himself. His dispatches were quickly recognized as an important media resource. He is now writing for the Inter Press Service, The Asia Times and many other outlets. His reports have also been published with The Nation, The Sunday Herald, Islam Online, the Guardian, Foreign Policy in Focus, and the Independent to name just a few. Dahr’s dispatches and hard news stories have been translated into French, Polish, German, Dutch, Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese, Chinese, Arabic and Turkish. On radio as well as television, Dahr reports for Democracy Now!, the BBC, and numerous other stations around the globe. Dahr is also special correspondent for Flashpoints. Dahr has spent a total of 8 months in occupied Iraq as one of only a few independent US journalists in the country. In the MidEast, Dahr has also has reported from Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. Dahr uses the DahrJamailIraq.com website and his popular mailing list to disseminate his dispatches.

Kim Jensen
A writer who has lived and taught in California, France, and the Middle East. She and her husband Palestinian painter Zahi Khamis have been active in human rights movements for many years. Her writings have appeared in a wide variety of newspapers and magazines. In 2001 she won the Raymond Carver Prize for Short Fiction. She currently lives in Maryland, with Zahi and their two children. She is on the editorial board of the Baltimore Review and is Assistant Professor of English at the Community College of Baltimore County.

Judy Kibinge
Filmmaker, writer and artist. She lives in Nairobi.

Martin Kimani
Lives and works in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He has previously been a Teaching Fellow at the Joint Services Command and Staff College in Shrivenham, UK and an Associate of the Conflict Security and Development Group of King’s College of the University of London where he is a doctoral candidate. He can be reached at martinkimani@gmail.com.

Stephanie McMillan
Her work has appeared in dozens of publications including Monday Magazine (Canada), Comic Relief, Impact Press, Clamor, Comic News, The Funny Times, Megh Barta (Bangladesh), San Francisco Bay Guardian, Casseurs de Pub (France), Boston’s Weekly Dig, Anchorage Press, and The Word (Canada). A collection of her cartoons, “Attitude Presents Minimum Security” was published in 2005. Her work is also included in “Attitude: The New Subversive Political Cartoonists” (2002), as well as in various textbooks and several books in the Opposing Viewpoints series by Gale Publishing Group. She is a founding member of Cartoonists With Attitude, a group of ground-breaking social commentary and political cartoonists formed in 2006, many of whom appear in N.B.M. Publishing’s “Attitude” series of books edited by Ted Rall.

Vivek Mehta
Member of Concerned Kenyan Writers.

Mwandawiro Mghanga
Former Kenyan exile, student leader, and current MP for Wundanyi Constituency in Kenya.

Tony Mochama
Journalist; poet.

Betty Muragori
Has a degree in Botany and zoology from the University of Nairobi and a Masters degree in Environmental Studies from Clark University in Massachusetts, USA. Together with a friend Betty started a consultancy, Sienna Associates in March 2003.

Wambui Mwangi
Scholar and writer. She lives in Toronto and Nairobi, teaches at the University of Toronto, and blogs occasionally on Diary of a Mad Kenyan Woman. She is the Director of GenerationKenya.

Shabnam Nadiya
Writer, poet, and translator. Her work has appeared in the anthologies Galpa: Short Stories by Women from Bangladesh (Saqi Books, UK), From the Delta, Different Perspectives: Women Writing in Bangladesh, The Escape and Other Stories, and 1971 and After (all from University Press Ltd, Bangladesh), and New Age Short Stories (New Age/writers.ink). Her prose, poetry and translations have also been published in various print and online periodicals, including World View, Storyglossia, Her Circle, Bonfire, Texts’ Bones, The Beat, Words Without Borders, Cerebration, and Kali O Kalam. Recently, she won the 3rd Prize at the Another Look Short Story Contest 2006 (Torrevieja, Spain). Nadiya lives in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with her husband and daughter.

Yvonne A. Owuor
A storyteller who lives in Nairobi. She has contributed numerous short stories to different publications worldwide. Her story about the consequences of regional civil strife, Weight of Whispers, won the Caine Prize for African Writing in 2003. She has at last finalised work on her first novel, working title Red Rain. A contributor to Kwani, and a traveller, she is suddenly rabidly possessive about her country, Kenya.

Stephen Derwent Partington
Teacher in Kenya, and poet. He lives and works just outside Machakos. A collection of poems, SMS & Face to Face, was published by Phoenix, Kenya.

Shailja Patel
An award-winning Kenyan poet, playwright, theatre artist, and political activist. She is author of Migritude I: The Mother (Lietocolle), and two collections of poetry: Dreaming In Gujurati, and Shilling Love. Her work has been translated into ten languages. She performs internationally, at venues ranging from New York’s Lincoln Centre to Durban’s Poetry Africa Festival.  Recent honours include the inaugural Fanny-Ann Eddy Poetry Award from IRN-Africa,  the 2009 Guest Writer Fellowship at the Nordic Africa Institute, and a New Tactics In Human Rights Grant. Shailja is a founding member of Kenyans for Peace, Truth and Justice, which works towards a just and equitable democracy in Kenya.

Potash
Authors the blog A Kenyan Urban Narrative. His blog has suffered the bane of lesser writers: Demise in the face of critical acclaim. Having lost his street credibility to the embrace of Nairobi’s Literati, Potash’s blog is no longer the gritty voice of Nairobi’s underground. His old friends from his street days have taken to whispering, with mounting anger and loathing, that Potash has gone out and got himself a regular job and a pinstriped suit. The bigger question is: Who reads him any more?

Marge Piercy
Author of seventeen novels including The New York Times Bestseller Gone To Soldiers; the National Bestsellers Braided Lives and The Longings of Women and the classic Woman on the Edge of Time; seventeen volumes of poetry, and a critically acclaimed memoir Sleeping with Cats. Born in center city Detroit, educated at the University of Michigan, the recipient of four honorary doctorates, she has been a key player in many of the major progressive political battles of our time, including the anti-Vietnam war and the women’s movement, and most recently an active participant in the resistance to the war in Iraq.

Mahmud Rahman
Born in Dhaka, what was then East Pakistan. Lived on Mymensingh Road, witness to the motorcades of royalty and dictators, to the passing of horse carriages in favor of buses and auto rickshaws, and to the alternating cycles of mass demonstrations and military curfews and gunfire. Schooled – with conflict – by Catholic missionaries from the American Midwest. Active in the movement for the liberation of Bangladesh. Refugee in India during 1971 war. Adult life in the U.S. shaped by the background of racial violence in the Boston of the 70s and the collapse of industry in the Detroit of the 80s. A writer over decades, devoted to fiction since the mid-90s. In May 2004, graduated with an MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College in Oakland, California.

Margaret Randall
Lived in Latin America (Mexico, Cuba, Nicaragua) for close to a quarter century. When she returned to the U.S. in 1984, the government ordered her deported because of the content of some of her books. With the support of many good people, she waged an almost five-year battle to remain in the country of her birth, winning it in 1989. Most recent among her more than eighty books are STONES WITNESS (University of Arizona Press, 2007) and the forthcoming TO CHANGE THE WORLD: MY YEARS IN CUBA (due out in fall 2008 from Rutgers University Press). Randall lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her life companion, the artist and teacher Barbara Byers.

Adrienne Rich
Author of more than sixteen volumes of poetry, including Diving into the Wreck, The Dream of a Common Language, The Fact of a Doorframe: Selected Poems 1950-2001, An Atlas of the Difficult World: Poems 1988-1991, Collected Early Poems: 1950-1970, Dark Fields of the Republic: Poems 1991-1995, Midnight Salvage, Fox, and The School Among the Ruins, as well as Of Woman Born: Motherhood as Experience and Institution and What is Found There: Notebooks on Poetry and Politics. Rich’s newest book of poems is Telephone Ringing in the Labyrinth (2007). Her new collection of essays is A Human Eye: Essays on Art in Society, May 2009.

Andrew Rihn
Writer and student.  His poetry has appeared online at MR Zine, Poetic Injustice, Dissident Voice, and Poets Against the War.  He lives in Canton, OH.

Kalundi Serumaga
Part of the immediate post-independence generation (born in the early sixties). Grew up in Uganda, apart from formal education, was trained as an actor for the Abafumi Theatre Comapany in adolescence. Found himself in Kenya after family had to flee Amin persecution of the artistic community. Spent adolescence and very early 20’s growing up in Kenya as part of the very politically active Ugandan exile community, which cost father (Robert Serumaga 1939-1980: actor, writer, soldier, politician, theatre director) his life. Moved to UK. Remained very active in Uganda exile community politics there. Acquired two degrees: Government/Management (BA) and Independent Film-making (MA). Returned to Uganda in early ’90s. Is active in the media and artistic scenes. Worked as Director, Uganda National Cultural Centre/National Theatre for 5 years and later Director for a global, very confused NGO. Left while still sane. Works now as an Independent film maker, media and artistic consultant, as well as host of a politically focused radio show in Kampala that several politicians (including President Museveni) have reportedly vowed never to return to, having been interviewed there. Recently had on-air contretemps with one Dr. Alfred Mutua there. Recently completed a documentary on the land disputes among Uganda and Kenya’s Kalenjin people (was in KIFF). Currently completing a documentary on the crisis of the Anglican church in Africa, from an African perspective. Campaigner for native rights in Uganda, as well as founder of the Serumaga Centre For The Arts.

Cindy Sheehan
Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Spc. Casey Austin Sheehan who was KIA in Iraq on 04/04/04. She is a co-founder and President of Gold Star Families for Peace and the author of two books: Not One More Mother’s Child and Dear President Bush.

Carol Simpson
The pen-name of an artistic team who have been doing cartoons about work and business for 20 years. Estelle Carol does the drawings and Bob Simpson writes the gags. They are union cartoonists. Estelle is a member of the Graphic Artists Guild and Bob belongs to the National Writers Union. They fire off cartoons aimed at America’s corporate establishment and its wholly owned subsidiary, the U.S. Government. Their work can be found in labor, alternative and business publications across North America and around the world.

Paul Street
Writer, speaker, activist, historian, and satirist based in Iowa City, IA and Chicago, IL.  He is the author of Empire and Inequality: America and the World Since 9/11 (Boulder, CO: Paradigm); Racial Oppression in the Global Metropolis (New York: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007); and Segregated Schools: Educational Apartheid in Post-Civil Rights America (New York: Routledge, 2005). Paul can be reached at paulstreet99@yahoo.com.

Mark Vallen
Born in Los Angeles California in 1953, Vallen has been creating images for as long as he can remember. By 1971, at the age of 17, he had already published cartoons in the Los Angeles Free Press newspaper. In the same year he published his first street poster, a pre-Watergate artwork titled, Evict Nixon! He studied art at the prestigious Otis Parsons Art Institute of Los Angeles, where he was influenced by the great African American social realist, Charles White. But despite his schooling the artist considers himself to be largely self taught. He forged a style shaped not so much by how others painted, but what they painted. Vallen has a firm commitment to figurative realism, and he’s derived inspiration from the rich heritage of artists working as social critics and documentarians. His influences range from Goya and Daumier, to the German Expressionists and Mexican Muralists. His popular web log is Art For A Change where he discusses art theory and news related to the arts. Further bio: here.

Joseph Veramu
Leading Fijian novelist and head of the Lautoka Campus of The University of the South Pacific. Author of Growing Up in Fiji, a social commentary on Fijian child rearing practices; the story collections, The Black Messiah, and Sunrise to the Coup; the novels Moving Through the Streets, and Rising Above the Labyrinth; and Let’s Do it Our Way, a book about education and development. He has also written a children’s story-book, The Shark, and he is editor of two collections of myths and legends, The Two Turtles and the Ungrateful Snake and The Snake Prince.

Andre Vltchek
Raised in Central Europe; a naturalized US citizen. Novelist, poet, political novelist, journalist and filmmaker, he has covered dozens of war zones from Bosnia and Peru to Sri Lanka and East Timor. He is the author of a novel Nalezeny, published in Czech. Point of No Return is his first work of fiction written in English. Other works include a book of political nonfiction Western Terror: From Potosi to Baghdad; the play Ghosts of Valparaiso, translated into several languages; and with Rossie Indira, a book of conversations with the foremost Southeast Asian writer Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Exile. He writes for several publications worldwide, including Z Magazine, Le Monde Diplomatique and Czech Press. He recently directed the feature length documentary film about the Indonesian massacres in 1965 – Terlena – Breaking of The Nation. Cofounder and Coeditor of Mainstay Press and Liberation Lit, he presently lives in Southeast Asia. See Andre Vltchek’s website and blog.

Rasna Warah
A columnist with Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper, Rasna Warah has been variously described as a recovering UN employee, a slum journalist and a failed novelist. Her work has appeared in various national and international publications, including Kwani?, South Africa’s Mail and Guardian, BBC Online, People and the Planet, Habitat Debate and Sustainable Development International. She has contributed to various books and anthologies, including the State of the World 2007 by the Worldwatch Institute and was editor and co-author of UN-Habitat’s State of the World’s Cities 2006/7, which examines living conditions in the world’s slums. She is also the author of Triple Heritage: A Journey to Self-discovery (1998), which looks at the social, economic and political history of Asians in Kenya. She has edited and compiled an anthology that critiques the way development is practised in Africa, and is currently looking for potential publishers.

Buff Whitman-Bradley
Peace and social justice activist in northern California.  He is the author of two books of poetry, b. eagle, poet, and The Honey Philosophies.  In addition to writing, he produces documentary audios and videos, including the award winning Outside In, a film about people who visit prisoners on San Quentin’s death row.

Jenny Ruth Yasi
Activist singer-songwriter, behavior scientist, organic grower and small town Founding Mother for an island community off the coast of Maine. Awarded the 2004 OMNI International Peace Writing Fiction Award. Also won the Carbonneau Prize from Stonecoast Writer’s workshop, and has been published in Words and Images 2000, Harbor Voices, and anthologized in Women Behaving Badly. Her recent non-fiction mostly concerns canine behavior, and has been published regionally as well as nationally. Blogs via Whole Dog Camp.

Mickey Z.
Until the laws are changed or the power runs out, Mickey Z. can be found here: http://mickeyz.net/.