Rwandan-American activist and author
Clemantine Wamariya (born 1988) is a Rwandan-American author, speaker, and human rights activist.
- It’s the journey of digging deep into yourself and the things you discover if you only dare to dig deep into your memories, your relationship, and your thoughts. It’s been such an incredible journey, but thank goodness I was not alone in it. So many people feeding me, listening to me, editing, hosting me—so it’s not been alone.
- On her book The Girl Who Smiled Beads in “A Conversation with Clemantine Wamariya” in Read it Forward (2017)
- Home is a concept. It’s one of a story that we cling to so deeply. When your home has been really, “here is my couch, here is my this, here is my that,” it becomes like mine. For me, home is where people who are loving are. It could be on the street. It could be inside of a tent. It could be in a place where they’re not given a land, then that is a place called a slum. It could be in the high rises of New York or in the middle of chaos in Mexico City. And the physical piece of a home is so important, especially when the weather—sun, cold—is against you…
- On what she considers “home” in “A Conversation with Clemantine Wamariya” in Read it Forward (2017)
- Every single person on the planet has equal humanity. In my own life I’ve gone from being seen as utterly worthless to [having] great privilege, and nothing about who I am inside has changed. Every person you see seeking refuge, every person you see walking away from their whole life because their country has descended into chaos and war…I am every one of those people. You are every one of those people too…
- On the plight of refugees in “Clemantine Wamariya, Who Survived Genocide in Rwanda, on Her New Memoir, The Girl Who Smiled Beads—and Living for Black Joy” in Vogue Magazine (2018 Mar 16)
- I want to be so loud about the experience of killing each other. I want to tap into everyone’s senses, to touch on our human sensibility.
- On what she hopes The Girl Who Smiled Beads accomplishes in “A moment on ‘Oprah’ made her a human rights symbol. She wants to be more than that.” in The Washington Post (2018 Apr 19)