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A Memoir & Manifesto
Table of Contents
About The Book
On the eve of Edafe Okporo’s twenty-sixth birthday, he was awoken by a violent mob outside his window in Abuja, Nigeria. The mob threatened his life after discovering the secret Edafe had been hiding for years—that he is a gay man. Left with no other choice, he purchased a one-way plane ticket to New York City and fled for his life. Though America had always been painted to him as a land of freedom and opportunity, it was anything but when he arrived just days before the tumultuous 2016 presidential election.
Edafe would go on to spend the next six months at an immigration detention center in Elizabeth, New Jersey. After navigating the confusing, often draconian, US immigration and legal system, he was finally granted asylum. But he would soon realize that America is exceptionally good at keeping people locked up but is seriously lacking in integrating freed refugees into society.
Asylum is Edafe’s “powerful, eye-opening” (Dr. Eric Cervini, New York Times bestselling author of The Deviant’s War) memoir and manifesto, which documents his experiences growing up gay in Nigeria, fleeing to America, navigating the immigration system, and making a life for himself as a Black, gay immigrant. Alongside his personal story is a blaring call to action—not only for immigration reform but for a just immigration system for refugees everywhere. This book imagines a future where immigrants and asylees are treated with fairness, transparency, and compassion. It aims to help us understand that home is not just where you feel safe and welcome but also how you can make it feel safe and welcome for others.
Why We Love It
“Both a moving memoir and an impassioned call for overhaul to our immigration system, Asylum documents the experiences of one man’s experience with the US immigration system, and integrating to life in America, as a Black, gay man. Edafe Okporo’s book is intersectional, persuasive, and timely in its plea for reform and compassion toward migrant policies and migrants.”
—LaSharah B., VP, Executive Editor, on Asylum
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster (June 13, 2023)
- Length: 224 pages
- ISBN13: 9781982183752
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Raves and Reviews
"Through the fires of persecution and exile, Edafe Okporo found liberation. Written with urgency and insight, Asylum is a moving and dramatic account of a gay Nigerian's search for his place in the world, a book that reminds us that so many queer folks around the world have yet to achieve their freedoms."—David Ebershoff, New York Times bestselling author of The Danish Girl and The 19th Wife
“Powerful, honest and deeply moving, Edafe Okporo’s Asylum is a must read. From dealing with unimaginable persecution to transforming the lives and hearts of countless people, Edafe lets us in, offering us an intimate look into his journey and the realities of so many. —Elliot Page, actor
Both memoir and a call to action, Edafe Okporo’s book is a powerful, eye-opening story of his escape from persecution as a gay man, a heartbreaking yet hopeful illustration of the unique challenges faced by queer refugees around the world. —Dr. Eric Cervini, NYT best selling author of The Deviant’s War
Resources and Downloads
High Resolution Images
- Book Cover Image (jpg): Asylum Trade Paperback 9781982183752
- Author Photo (jpg): Edafe Okporo Author Photo by Christopher Tomas(0.1 MB)
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