Ugandan writer Jenninfer Makumbi is the latest recipient of the $165,000 Windham Campbell Prize. The Prize is awarded every year to eight artists. Makumbi is the author of Kintu, a novel based on Buganda oral history and myth.
In 1958, the African writer had to be coaxed into publication. They were so self-effacing they would rarely recommend their own stories for inclusion in anthologies, claiming “There are others who write better”. But, as Oris Aigbokhaevbolo writes, the African writer today seeks respect and the reputation conferred by publishing.
“If my mother had one goal, it was to free my mind,” Trevor Noah writes in his memoir Born A Crime which has won him the Thurber prize for American Humor.
The Caine Prize for African Writing, described as Africa’s leading literary award this year went to Bushra al-Fadil for his short story entitled “The Story of the Girl Whose Birds Flew Away”, translated by Max Shmookler, published in The Book of Khartoum – A City in Short Fiction (Comma Press, UK. 2016).
The Caine Prize for African Writing, currently in its 18th year, released the 2017 shortlist. This year’s shortlist seems to have taken a cue from the 2015 debate over inclusivity and includes a few relatively unknown names. The list includes three Nigerian writers, a South African and a Sudanese.
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has directed the Ministry of Education to distribute copies of the second edition of his autobiography, ‘Sowing the Mustard Seed’ as a gift to government secondary schools to promote a proper understanding, appreciation and loyalty to Uganda’s national identity. The first edition of the book was based on series of interviews with British historian. In the second edition, Museveni accounts the history of the struggle to liberate Uganda from dictators.
St. Lucian poet and playwright, Sir Derek Alton Walcott died today at his home at Cap Estate at the age of 87. The 1992 Nobel laureate for Literature had been hospitalised for a while. Walcott, who is arguably the greatest writer from the Caribbean first trained as a painter under Harold Simmons. He was the second Caribbean writer to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature after Saint-John Perse won it in 1960. The continent joins the world in mourning the death of a Caribbean literary icon and tributes continue to pour in.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie finds herself on the spotlight for statements she made recently on transgender. The Nigerian novelist in an interview with Channel 4 categorically stated her thoughts on transgender women, and the remarks have been seen by many as problematic, while others have defended her comments.
The publishing industry continues to elicit controversy, blame and counter blame far as the publication of literary works is concerned. Oduor Jagero, a self-published author, examines self-publishing as an alternative to traditional publishing.