Morphology of the Embryonic Kenyan ‘Spoken Word’ Poetry: A Case Study
Christopher Mwiti, John Mugubi

The launch of Tony Mochama’s revolutionary anthology of poetry entitled What If I AM a Literary Gangster (2007), attracted a lot of attention in Kenya. His poetry divided literary critics in the country right in the middle with one school averring that Mochama’s kind of writing should be encouraged and the other rubbishing it as pseudo-literary garbage. One critic described it as mutinous ‘scribbling and musings’ (qtd. in According to this critic (Egara Kabaji), Mochama’s are, ‘Not the conventional neatly trimmed lines rich in meaning and social concern, as Okot p’Bitek's or Jared Angira’s (qtd. in In his introduction to his anthology, What If I AM a Literary Gangster (2007), Mochama confesses to having derived his title from Kabaji’s assertion that he (Mochama) is a ‘literary gangster’ whose godfather is Binyavanga Wainaina Kenyan writer renown for Avant garde Literature). So what are the manifestations of this rebellious poetry and does it contain any literary merits?

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jflcc.v3n1a5