From Fugitive to Fiction

Date of Alert: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2012



From Fugitive to Fiction: The Literary and Political Odyssey of James Kilgore

Sunday September 30, 2012: 4-6pm

518 Valencia Street - San Francisco

James Kilgore was a fugitive for 27 years, on the run for his participation in political violence in California during the 1970s. He spent most of his time underground in southern Africa, where he was an educator, activist and father. Upon his arrest in Cape Town in 2002, dozens of people from around the world, including Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa, wrote letters of support to the court. In the end, the U.S. authorities sentenced him to six and a half years in prison, which he completed in 2009.

During his incarceration he transformed into a fiction writer, drafting several novels, three of which have been published. His first two works were historical novels centered on struggles for freedom in
Zimbabwe and South Africa. His most recent work, Prudence Couldn't Swim, is a new departure for this versatile and creative writer-a murder mystery set in Oakland CA which brings together characters from southern Africa and the California prison system. Prudence wraps the complexities of African independence and mass incarceration into a humorous but penetrating tale.

Currently a research scholar at the Center for African Studies at the University of Illinois and an activist on criminal justice issues, Kilgore has just returned from his first visit to South Africa since his arrest. Now he will be making his first trip to California since his release from prison.

More info on Prudence Couldn't Swim can be found on PM Press’ website:

Sponsored by the Freedom Archives
For more information call 415-863-9977


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