Video: African Authors at 2017 Virginia Festival of the Book

Three African authors, all with roots in Nigeria (two living in the United States, the third a South African citizen), participated in a panel discussion at the Virginia Festival of the Book in Charlottesville on March 24. The panel, called “Perspectives from Africa: Ndibe, Okupe, and Omotoso” and moderated by University of Virginia creative writing …

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Chinese literature in Africa: meaningful or ceremonial?

Catherine Gilbert, King’s College London Sino-African relations have garnered a great deal of public interest in recent decades. Commentary tends to focus on trade, economic investment and aid and is often negative in tone. Based on interviews I conducted in Benin in early 2015, culture is perceived as the most positive aspect of the relationship. …

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Under the influence of … the Black Consciousness novel ‘Amandla’

Barbara Boswell, University of the Witwatersrand This is the third in a weekly arts and culture series called “Under the influence”, in which we ask experts to share what they believe are the most influential works in their field. Here, Barbara Boswell, from South Africa’s University of the Witwatersrand, introduces Miriam Tlali’s novel “Amandla”. South …

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New wave of African sci-fi will inspire innovation

By Jonathan Dotse Science fiction helped accelerate Western development. It could do the same in Africa, says Jonathan Dotse. The Industrial Revolution sparked the first wave of modern science fiction narratives, which used the power of creative storytelling to explore the implications of unfolding technological developments. Science and speculation drove those stories and narratives, allowing …

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Nigeria’s young authors are not always ‘heirs’ to their literary forebears

Tiziana Morosetti, University of Oxford Chigozie Obioma’s Man Booker Prize nomination for The Fishermen follows by more than ten years that of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus in 2004. No other Nigerian writer has made it to the prize in between. The similarities between Obioma and Adichie are striking. Both writers were in their 20s …

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