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Biography of Scholastique MUKASONGA

Rwanda > Literature : Scholastique MUKASONGA

Scholastique MUKASONGA
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Biography :

Scholastique Mukasonga born in 1956 is Rwandan writer. Her family were exterminated.

Born in 1954, Scholastique suffered from a violent childhood owing to the strong ethnic problems that confronted her country. She was the only one of her family to survive the terrible Tsutsi genocide and now lives in Normandy, where she works as a social assistant.

Deported with all of her family in 1959, they were taken to Nyamata, an inhospitable region of Rwanda, where she had to put up with the humiliations and violences of the Hutus. She went to the Notre Dame des Citeaux school in Kigali where she succeeded in being accepted into a training school for social assistants in the south of the country.

In 1973, she escaped from Rwanda and crossed the frontier into Burundi with her elder brother in order to escape the raids of the Hutus against the Tutsis. Once past the frontier, her nightmare was over, she met a french ethnologist, her future husband and obtained her diploma in 1975.

Installed in France for many years, she has only been back twice, once in 1986 when she entered secretly and a second time in 2004, ten years after the genocide. Twelve years after she published Inyensi ou les cafards (Gallimard, 2006), which is the autobiographical story which traces back in time the daily life and humiliations, massacres and final eile that she went through. Nourished by her souvenirs of childhood, this book is the disturbing recital of what it was like to be a Tutsi in the 60's.

She has since gone on to write La femme aux pieds nus (Gallimard, 2008), and which won the Seligmann prize in 2008 and L’Iguifou (Gallimard, 2008).

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Last update : 11/07/2012

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