The Girl Who Can And Other Stories by Ama Ata Aidoo
Ama Ata Aidoo’s best known work is Our Sister Killjoy and it was in reading this, that I was first introduced to her work. She has had an admirable career, serving as the Minister of Education in her country of origin – Ghana – a wonderful accomplishment for this poet, writer and academic. Her writing explores the trials and tribulations of African women as they navigate life in a society governed by patriarchy. Here is an extract from the title story from her short story collection:
Running with our classmates on our small sports field and winning first place each time never seemed to me to be anything about which to tell anyone at home. This time it was different. I don’t know how the teachers decided to let me run for the junior section of our school in the district games. But they did.
When I went home to tell my mother and Nana, they had not believed it at first. So Nana had taken it upon herself to go and ‘ask into it properly’. She came home to tell my mother that it was really true. I was one of my school’s runners.