"With Shakespeare and poetry, a new world was born. New dreams, new desires, a self consciousness was born. I desired to know to know myself in terms of the new standards set by these books." -- Peter Abrahams
Peter Abrahams (born March 3, 1919) is a South African novelist.
His father was from Ethiopia and his mother was classified by South Africa as a mixed race person, a "Kleurling" or Coloured. He was born in Vrededorp, nearby Johannesburg, but left South Africa in 1939. He worked first as a sailor, and then as a journalist in London, at which time, he lived with his wife, Daphne, at Loughton. Whilst in London, he met several important black leaders and writers, such as Jomo Kenyatta. He then settled in Jamaica in 1956. One of South Africa's most prominent black writers, his work deals with political and social issues, especially with racism. His novel, Mine Boy (1946), one of the first works to bring him to critical attention, and his memoir Tell Freedom (1954) deal in part with apartheid. His other works include the story collection Dark Testament (1942) and the novels The Path of Thunder (1948), A Wreath for Udomo (1956), A Night of Their Own (1965), the Jamaica-set This Island Now (1966, the only one of his novels not set in Africa) and The View from Coyaba (1985). He also wrote This Island Now, which speaks to the ways power and money can change most people's perspectives.
"Joseph and his mother come from the black kings who were before the white man.""Many have changed so much that they have lost the magic of the dream that carried them on their own bootstraps.""To get where you want to go you can't only do what you like.""You can't walk alone. Many have given the illusion, but none have really walked alone. Man is not made that way. Each man is bedded in his people, their history, their culture, and their values."