Although all-things “African” had been exalted in my house, this was not the case for project kids at P.S. 40, nor the “best of the brightest” at P.S/I.S. 308. It was at those places where I learned that there was a world’s difference between how we’re raised, and how we grow up.
Posts Tagged: Africa
Within the past five years, we’ve seen a sea change in attitudes towards homosexuality by writers, in part a response to virulent anti-homosexual legislation in key locations. Writers such as Chimamanda Adichie and Binyavanga Wainaina have been very open about their personal views on homosexuality and have gone on to challenge and change how homosexuality and same-sex desire is represented in fiction.
This is a Lasgidi of the mind, representing a meld of many club nights in Lagos and alternate Lagoses through the past decade. It is a cauldron of that vertiginous self-confidence that anyone who knows any Nigerians knows well.
Put down the New Yorker—Teju Cole is here with his selection of Nigerian dance jams, ready to take you clubbing in Lagos....more
Nearly a decade ago, Binvayanga Wainaina wrote an essay for Granta that changed his whole life. Now, he looks at the interior of African publishing, the landscape of literature on the continent, and the “Nollywoodification of the book market”:
“I am least interested about how Europe, the West, represents Africa.
Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness is driven by the search and discovery of Kurtz, the man turned mad by Africa. Kurtz is the pale white colonizer who rapes the continent, is also worshiped by the native population, and provides fodder for an endless stream of undergraduate English papers....more
Black to the future was/is a radical, dangerous, and daring dream—an impossibility. Science fiction and fantasy (sf&f) is a rehearsal of the impossible, an ideal realm for redefinition and reinvention. For Africans and their descendants in the diaspora, decolonizing our mind/body/spirits was/is an on-going sf&f project.
In a nation as solipsistic as the US, we don’t hear much about politics in other countries. This is doubly true when it comes to woman-centered movements, and triply true when those movements are in Africa.
In an opinion piece for the Guardian, Minna Salami talks about feminist success stories the Western world has largely ignored:
What would have once sounded like a far-fetched feminist fantasy – namely women forming the majority of a parliament – is a reality in one country in the world: Rwanda.
Prominent Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie sparked outrage in the African literary community last week with comments she made about the Caine Prize, a prestigious annual award for African writers.
Adichie said many things in her fascinating, no-nonsense Boston Review interview with Aaron Bady, but it was this dismissal that angered many: “But I haven’t even read the stories—I’m just not very interested....more
A fantastic essay at The New Inquiry inspects the recently deceased Chinua Achebe’s place in the Western literary canon.
In an interview a few years ago, Norman Rush was talking about the ways he was influenced by African writers, and he mentioned that “No non-African could do what Achebe has done.” And I get what he was saying.
Alexandra Fuller’s third memoir, Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness, turns the spotlight on her mother—”a broken, splendid, fierce mother.”...more
I swear to God if I hear one more thing about Sarah Palin I’m going to snap, so this week, The Rumpus is giving you a roundup of political links that are a lot more interesting than anything ever written by or about her....more
Nnedi Okorafor has an essay over at The Nebula Awards site about Africa’s relationship with science fiction, as well as a discussion on Penguin’s decision to make science fiction ineligible for The Penguin Prize for African Writing.
“As (director Tchidi) Chikere said, African audiences don’t feel that science fiction is really concerned with what’s real, what’s present…....more
“After the phone call from The New Yorker, I walked more than a mile to church to thank God. But then I told God I would talk to Him another time and darted home.”...more