Winner of the Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poets, The Kitchen-Dweller’s Testimony asks: Whose testimony is valid? Whose testimony is worth recording? Osman’s speakers, who are almost always women, assert and reassert in an attempt to establish authority, often through persistent questioning. Specters of race, displacement, and colonialism are often present in her work, providing momentum for speakers to reach beyond their primary, apparent dimensions and better communicate. The Kitchen-Dweller’s Testimony is about love and longing, divorce, distilled desire, and all the ways we injure ourselves and one another.
Ladan Osman is a Somali-American poet and teacher. Her poetry is centered on her Somali and Muslim heritage, and has been published in a number of prominent literary magazines. In 2014, she was awarded the annual Sillerman First Book Prize for her collection The Kitchen Dweller's Testimony.