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A Confession in Three Movements | By Moyosore Orimoloye | Poetry

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And he who has none, even that which he has shall be taken from him. – Mark 4:25b. I Brethren, I know this message to be true. I was seventeen and had just lost love— to fellows like you. Immediately, in fulfillment of the Word, a door of losses opened unto me. She cited studies […]

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Bessie Head’s Gesture of Madness | By Hugo kaCanham | Essay

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Brittle Paper recently published a feature on Bessie Head’s 1991 collection of letters, A Gesture of Belonging. In that essay, Ainehi Edoro took me back to two years ago when Bessie’s letters were the centre of my life. Her story reads like that of my grandmother, my mother and many black women that I know. Her […]

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Is the Yoruba Demon Just a Self-absorbed Man? | By Koyejo Adebakin

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On May 18th, we posted the full transcript of Funmi Iyanda’s Youtube video titled “Why Are Yoruba Men Demons?” Read it here if you missed it. Koyejo Adebakin has written a response to Iyanda’s provocations, offering new insights into what the fascinating concept of a Yoruba demon might mean.  *** On a humid March evening […]

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When We Talk about Kintu | By Ellah Wakatama Allfrey

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When Kwani? launched its Manuscript Project competition in 2012 the stated aim was to find the best unpublished novels by writers from across Africa—and to publish them for readers across Africa. The call for submissions asserted a firm belief that ‘there is no greater celebration of emergent forms than in publishing our own’ with Billy Kahora […]

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Learning the Gag Reflex | By Logan February | Poetry

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Love does not want this body, this mouth, toothless maw, hanging open & belonging to nobody’s son. The father died & I became nobody. In Yoruba, a father is a name & the left hand is taboo. One cannot offer water with the left hand or sleep facing upward. At night, a witch will sit […]

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African Literature as Medicine: The 2016 Etisalat Prize Shortlist | By David Evans

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On May 20, the winner of the Etisalat Prize for Literature—awarded to a first-time African fiction book author—will be announced. Which of the three shortlisted novels is worthy of the prize? All of them! But if your soul is ailing, there is a novel here to comfort you. Ailment: Hubris. Physician: Julie Iromuanya. Prescription: Mr. […]

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We’re Queer, We’re Here | By Chibuihe Obi | Essay

Minneapolis Police Deputy Chief of Staff Medaria Arrdondo spoke with demonstrators outside the 4th Precinct Station Sunday night in Minneapolis.  ]  JEFF WHEELER • jeff.wheeler@startribune.com    After a man was shot by Minneapolis police early Sunday morning, Black Lives Matters and others protested Sunday night at the Minneapolis Police 4th Precinct station on Plymouth Ave. N.

The first time I felt compelled to document the queer body in my writing was during my second year at the university. I had this toe-curling experience in the hostel one certain night that left me tugging at my pen and bleeding profusely into the banality of an empty paper from the midnight when the […]

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A Song of Loss | Three Poems by Ajise Vincent

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a song of loss because we were young & bridled with beams of immaculacy, our fathers, men whose tongues had never tasted the pulse of sins, didn’t tell us of the tsunami that brewed in the progenies of adam when history was rewritten with blood, in a language where every syntax is a sin. then, […]

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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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EVENT: Afridiaspora Magazine to Host Zukiswa Wanner in New York

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A few days after the African Literature Association (ALA) Festival at Yale University, another event is upon us. Afridiaspora magazine […]

Fiston Mwanza Mujila’s Tram 83 Wins the 2017 Internationaler Literaturpreis Award in Germany

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Congo’s Fiston Mwanza Mujila has won the 2017 Internationaler Literaturpreis Award for the German translation of his first novel Tram 83. […]

With His 20th Book, Jose Eduardo Agualusa Is the First African to Win the International Dublin Literary Award

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Angola’s Jose Eduardo Agualusa has won the 2017 International Dublin Literary Award for his novel A General Theory of Oblivion, […]

#TBT | An Ode to Makeup | The Full Transcript of Chimamanda Adichie’s Wellesley Speech

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Our #TBT feature this week is Chimamanda Adichie’s Wellesley speech. Two years ago, Adichie gave the commencement speech at Wellesley […]

The Impossibly Dapper Novelist: A Look at Alain Mabanckou’s Style File

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From Chimamanda Adichie’s widely-publicized made-in-Nigeria wardrobe to Teju Cole’s Ikire Jones scarves to Prof Ato Quayson’s fedora hats, fashion and […]

Keeping Up With African Writers: Aminatta Forna

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  Among writers of her generation, Aminatta Forna belongs in the higher ranks of critical acclaim. With her work translated […]