Ama Ata Aidoo is one of the best-known African writers today. Spanning three decades of work, the poems in this collection address themes of colonialism, independence, motherhood, and gender in intimate, personal ways alongside commentary on broader social issues. After the Ceremonies is arranged in three parts: new and uncollected poems, some of which Aidoo calls “misplaced or downright lost”; selections from Aidoo’s An Angry Letter in January and Other Poems; and selections from Someone Talking to Sometime.
Although Aidoo is best known for her novels Changes: A Love Story and Our Sister Killjoy, which are widely read in women’s literature courses, and her plays The Dilemma of a Ghost and Anowa, which are read and performed all over the world, her prowess as a poet shines in this collection.
Ama Ata Aidoo was born in Abeadzi Kyiakor, in south central Ghana in 1942. She studied literature at the University of Ghana, won a fellowship to Stanford University, and subsequently accepted visiting professorships in the United States and Africa. Her poetry collections include Birds and Other Poems, Someone Talking to Sometime, and An Angry Letter in January and Other Poems. Helen Yitah is an associate professor of English at the University of Ghana. She is the founding director of the University of Ghana–Carnegie Writing Centre and author of Throwing Stones in Jest: Kasena Women's Proverbial Revolt.