This is the first book on stories of black people written by journalist and writer, Serge Bilé. The latest work of this Franco-Ivorian, captures the stories of Yasuke, the black samurai in the 16th century.
He tells the story of Yasuke, the main ethnic group in present day Mozambique who were captured by slave traders and sold in Gao to Jesuits, where they were then taken to Japan.
Bile says there still remains a misunderstanding of the black history because it is written by others.
We forget a lot of things because some memories are selective. I wanted to find that forgotten memory because it is the memory of our ancestors, it is the memory of our parents.
“This samurai is called Yasuke. He is a slave, at least an African who was captured in Mozambique, who was sent first to India to the Jesuits where he was a slave. And the visiting father of the Jesuits, who does a little tour of his missions. The missions go from Ethiopia to India, passing through Mozambique , he went to Japan and he brought this slave called Yasuke with him “, said Bilé.
The journalist cum writer said the interests of his readers to know more about the black samurai took him on a journey to discover history.
‘‘When we talk about the Second World War, we are mainly talking about the suffering of the greatest number, we forget that of the Senegalese skirmishers, those who played an important role, that of the blacks who were deported. We forget a lot of things because some memories are selective. I wanted to find that forgotten memory because it is the memory of our ancestors, it is the memory of our parents “,he added.
Serge Bilé, left Cote d’Ivoire for France and says he never forgot his roots. Today, he returns home every 3 months to promote his writings.
His books sell for between 3,000 and 5,000 CFA francs (4.50 to 7.50 euros), and says this is his little contribution to the growth of Cote d’Ivoire.