Buy Used
FREE Delivery on orders over £10.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: this is sheba feminist publishers 1990 reprint, paperback, inscription on about author page, some general wear overall good.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Zami: A New Spelling of My Name Paperback – 22 Jan 1996

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Paperback, 22 Jan 1996
"Please retry"
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
click to open popover

Special Offers and Product Promotions

Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Pandora; New edition edition (22 Jan. 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0044409486
  • ISBN-13: 978-0044409489
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 13 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 392,683 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

“Zami. Carriacou name for women who work together as friends and lovers.”

In this classic autobiography Audre Lorde combines elements of history, biography and myth to tell her own story. A young black girl grows up in thirties Harlem, a teenager lives through Pearl Harbour, a young woman experiences McCarthyism in fifties Greenwich Village. In and out of this lyrical chronicle move the women – mothers, lovers, friends – who are zami: ‘Every woman I have ever loved has left her print upon on me, where I loved some invaluable piece of myself apart from me – so different that I had to stretch and grow in order to recognise her.”

“Lorde is a convincing, powerful writer. Her prose speaks directly to the heart of racism, self-acceptance, mother- and womanhood”

“Listen to this rich and raging voice”

About the Author

A writer, activist, and mother of two, Audre Lorde grew up in 1930s Harlem. She earned a master s degree in library science from Columbia University, received a National Endowment for the Arts grant for poetry, and was New York State s Poet Laureate from 1991 to 1993. She is the author of twelve books, including ZAMI and THE BLACK UNICORN. Lorde died of cancer at the age of fifty-eight in 1992." --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See all 3 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Reading this book it's almost impossible to believe that Audre Lorde is so little-known outside of the lesbian community - her writing overshadows so much of what is praised by the mainstream press. 'Zami' is her autobiography, tracing her relationship with her family, her experience of growing up black in a country still divided by segregation, the different women that she loved through her life and the development of her artistic career. It never lapses into self-pity or vain self-absorption, and is as engrossing as the best-paced novel. That Lorde was primarily a poet is obvious - her language is incredibly rich and sensual. It took me a year trailing around bookstore to find this work, and it was well worth it.
Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
An incredible read. Brilliantly written.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9081ecfc) out of 5 stars 47 reviews
90 of 92 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8ee21f18) out of 5 stars An essential American life story 10 Jan. 2001
By Michael J. Mazza - Published on
Format: Paperback
In "Zami: A New Spelling of My Name," poet Audre Lorde has written a text she calls a "biomythography." I think of "biomythography" as a literary form that blends elements of autobiography, the novel, and personal mythology. But however you define the word, "Zami" is a powerful and beautiful text which illuminates the life of an African-American lesbian in the mid-20th century.
"Zami" begins with the young Audre and her parents, a Black immigrant couple who had settled in New York City. Lorde writes in detail of her cultural heritage from the Caribbean island of Grenada. From her childhood in Harlem to her young adulthood, the book is full of fascinating episodes and poetic language. Lorde's description of using her mother's traditional mortar and pestle to grind spices in the Caribbean style is a particular tour-de-force of sensuous language.
Lorde describes the roots of her life as a poet. She also vividly recalls what it was like to be a young Black lesbian in the 1950s. This particular aspect of "Zami" gives the book a special historical value. Lorde's narrative captures many of the cultural and political particulars of that era.
Audre Lorde attained a distinguished literary reputation as both a poet and essayist. But serious readers of Lorde must not miss her extraordinary "biomythography." This is an essential American life story which ranks up there with those of Benjamin Franklin, Harriet Jacobs, Malcolm X, and other important figures. Whether you're interested in the Caribbean-American experience, African-American literature, lesbian studies, or mid-20th century United States history, you will want to explore "Zami."
In this book Audre Lorde writes, "Every woman I have ever loved has left her print upon me." If you read "Zami," Lorde just might leave a lasting print upon you.
32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8ee21f6c) out of 5 stars A Memorable Portrait of a Difficult Life Shaped By Zami 22 Jun. 2004
By Hector Carbajal - Published on
Format: Paperback
In "Zami: A New Spelling of My Name: A Biomythography," Audre Lorde writes that "[e]very woman I have ever loved has left her print upon me." Thus, "Zami" serves as a window into Lorde's experiences with other women-especially her mother-who informed and shaped her life from childhood into adulthood within the context of romantic links and friendships, especially during turbulent and conflicting periods in American history. For example, Lorde describes a difficult childhood at school and at home during the poverty ridden 1930s. Especially revealing about this moment in time is Lorde's fascination with her mother's strength and courage amidst racial discrimination-which, according to Lorde, went unnamed. As a result, she grew up in a world where difference was much more assumed rather than defined and interrogated.
Consequently, this colored Lorde's world later as she formed special bonds with other women, which she termed "The Branded," a group of Lorde's "sisterhood of rebels," who used difference as a bond to challenge the status quo. This form of difference became pronounced, in addition to racial and gender difference, when sexuality became a threat during an intense anti-communist hysteria in the 1950s, which equated homosexuality with communist affiliation. In sum; to be black, female and queer in white McCarthy Amerika was a triple threat from which loneliness would emerge as a central factor plaguing Lorde's life.
However, Lorde's romantic links and friendships with other women would shape her survival and leave an everlasting legacy for later generations of lesbian women, especially black lesbian women. Tragically, some of Lorde's experiences with love and friendships were shattered by loss and mourning. Nevertheless, the collected instances of intimacy with other women shaped her life as a queer woman of color defining "Zami," a term specifying women working in unison as lovers and/or friends.
Lorde meticulously unfolds her narrative by using imagery and symbols as a way from which to tell her life story on an intimate level. The choice of words and images are compelling. For example, her trip to Mexico is described so vividly that I almost feel as I am there. Her description of New York gave me a sense of what life was like during a poverty ridden period in an urban setting. The description of clothes, faces, and bodies-especially within an erotic context-are remarkable. In sum, Lorde was a poet genius in her prose alongside her poetry.
"Zami" is an excellent read for courses in Women's Studies, Women's History, Women's Autobiography, African American Studies, Queer Studies, Lesbian and Gay Studies, and ethnic studies.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8f38a1d4) out of 5 stars What is a �Biomythography�? 30 July 1997
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Audre Lorde, best known for her gifted poetery and essays, leaves us with this striking autobiography of her early years as a writer, and as a struggling black lesbian in NYC. Slowly, through gentle inflections of her Grenadian roots and development of the ideas of Caricou society, she stitches together a number of very personal 'mythographies,' ultimately weaving a passionate, touching and mythic telling of her life.

Beautifully told, fascinating to read, I highly recommend this book.
20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8f38a588) out of 5 stars Zami is amazing! Yet another reason to love Audre Lorde! 7 Oct. 1999
By Nedra Johnson ( - Published on
Format: Paperback
One of the things I loved about this book was how descriptive Audre is about everything. She has the amazing ability to really put me right in the scene, because her attention to details paints such a vivid picture. You can almost taste what she is eating, touch what she is touching and so on... Audre's work often makes people hold her up as if she was more then human, this book let's you know how very human she was and for me, it let's me know how important it is to be "doing my work," as she put it in the "Transformation of Silence." Hey, are you doing yours?
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8f38a684) out of 5 stars This is a book for those sisters who know OUR pain 5 Sept. 1997
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Zami was one of the first books i read in my teens that helped me deal with the loneliness of being a young black woman in this world. It touched me and understood every word of the pain she felt...this book is a classic
Were these reviews helpful? Let us know