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How to say Babylon : a memoir  Cover Image Large Print Book Large Print Book

How to say Babylon : a memoir / Safiya Sinclair.

Sinclair, Safiya, (author.).


"Throughout her childhood, Safiya Sinclair's father, a volatile reggae musician and militant adherent to a strict sect of Rastafari, became obsessed with her purity, in particular, with the threat of what Rastas call Babylon, the immoral and corrupting influences of the Western world outside their home. He worried that womanhood would make Safiya and her sisters morally weak and impure, and believed a woman's highest virtue was her obedience. In an effort to keep Babylon outside the gate, he forbade almost everything. In place of pants, the women in her family were made to wear long skirts and dresses to cover their arms and legs, head wraps to cover their hair, no make-up, no jewelry, no opinions, no friends. Safiya's mother, while loyal to her father, nonetheless gave Safiya and her siblings the gift of books, including poetry, to which Safiya latched on for dear life. And as Safiya watched her mother struggle voicelessly for years under housework and the rigidity of her father's beliefs, she increasingly used her education as a sharp tool with which to find her voice and break free. Inevitably, with her rebellion comes clashes with her father, whose rage and paranoia explodes in increasing violence. As Safiya's voice grows, lyrically and poetically, a collision course is set between them. How to Say Babylon is Sinclair's reckoning with the culture that initially nourished but ultimately sought to silence her; it is her reckoning with patriarchy and tradition, and the legacy of colonialism in Jamaica. Rich in lyricism and language only a poet could evoke, How to Say Babylon is both a universal story of a woman finding her own power and a unique glimpse into a rarefied world we may know how to name, Rastafari, but one we know little about"-- Provided by publisher.

Record details

  • ISBN: 9798885797108
  • Physical Description: 641 pages (large print) ; 22 cm.
  • Publisher: [Farmington Hills] : Thorndike Press Large Print Biography and Memoir, 2024.

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Contains bibliography.
Formatted Contents Note:
Author's note -- Prologue -- Budgerigar. The man who would be god -- Domain of the marvelous -- Fisherman's daughter -- Unclean women -- Bettah must come -- Revelations -- As the twig is bent -- Chicken merry hawk -- Hydra -- Age of wonder -- Moth in amber -- Medusa. My Eurydice -- The red belt -- False idol -- Book of Esther -- Not Hollywood -- Through the fire -- Silver -- Lionheart. Galatea -- Dance of Salome -- Leaving Sequestra -- Coven -- Jezebel -- Harbinger of Babylon -- Mermaid. Daughter of Lilith -- The red door -- Iphigenia -- Jumbie bird -- I woman.
Subject: Sinclair, Safiya.
Women poets, American > Biography.
Women college teachers > United States > Biography.
Rastafarians > Biography.
Jamaicans > Biography.
Fathers and daughters.
African American women authors > 21st century > Biography.
Large type books.
Poétesses américaines > Biographies.
Professeures (Enseignement supérieur) > États-Unis > Biographies.
Jamaïquains > Biographies.
Pères et filles.
Écrivaines noires américaines > 21e siècle > Biographies.
Livres en gros caractères.
large print books.
African American women authors.
Genre: Large type books.
large print books.
autobiographies (literary works)
Large type books.
Large print books.
Large print books.
Livres en gros caractères.

Available copies

  • 1 of 1 copy available at Homer Library. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Homer Library System. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Homer Public Library.


  • 0 current holds with 1 total copy.
Show Only Available Copies
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Homer Public Library LP B SINCLAIR (Text) 000172687 Large Print -- Biography Available -

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