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Namwali Serpell on the Beauty and Uses of Being an Outsider

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Some of you may remember Namwali Serpell as the 2015 winner of the Caine Prize for African Writing. She teaches American literature at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2o14, her second book Seven Modes of Uncertainty was published by Harvard University Press. Last week, a video of her sharing her experience as an outsider was […]

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African Literary Digest: 8 Must-Reads of January, 2017

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We ended 2016 with a compilation of our best pieces of the year. The first month of 2017 is gone but it wasn’t arid: there was writing that caught our attention, and both the LGBTIQ group 14 and Afreada magazine released beautiful anthologies. Here are our must-read selections, an unranked list. They’re all online so […]

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Imbolo Mbue’s Afro Gets Its Very Own Essay in The Guardian

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Imbolo Mbue instantly won our hearts a few years ago when news broke that she’d signed a million-dollar book deal with Random House. However, months after the news about her book deal, there were no photographs of Mbue anywhere on the internet. Then one fine day, the Wall Street Journal did a feature on her, […]

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How To Buy A Soul | by Michael E. Umoh | African Fiction

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“Everyone agreed that something had gone wrong; Kunle had died this way: getting to his twenty-second birthday, Kunle who hated fish, had slumped at a fish market and died.”   ON THE DAY that I, Tola, was to buy a soul, my father walked into my room and informed me that there were no souls […]

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PHOTOS | Abantu Book Festival: A Literary Platform for Black Writers and Readers

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On December 6th, history was made in South Africa with the inauguration of the Abantu Festival. Black writers in South Africa and from other parts of the continent gathered in Soweto to celebrate African writing and literary culture. Novelist Panashe Chigumadzi, one of the festival’s main curators, was inspired, in part, by Ake Art and Books […]

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African Literary Digest: The 31 Best Pieces of 2016

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The year 2016 has been fertile for writing in general, and for creative non-fiction in particular. On the African literary scene, the most remarkable talking points would be the upsurge of new talent (see the shortlists of the Miles Morland Scholarship and the Gerald Kraak Award) and new outlets for those voices (see our feature […]

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My Feminism | On the Necessity of Men | by Kola Tubosun

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When I was first asked to write this piece, the issues of the day included the trendy acceptance of feminism through Chimamanda Adichie’s delightful viral TED talk, the resulting print pamphlet that has achieved its own notable virality across Europe, and a high profile appearance of the author on the fashion red carpet. Also in […]

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One Day I Will Write About This City in Flowery Words | By Basit Jamiu | A Memoir

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  “Forgive me if what has seemed little to you, to me is all.” Jose Saramago *** THE FIRST TIME I watched a scene in October 1, that brilliant movie by Kunle Afolayan, where one of the characters vehemently made a remark that he was the one who constructed the Lokoja road but Awolowo and […]

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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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Dear Genevieve | Words are Powerful, Speak the Truth, Even if Your Voice Shakes (pt. 6) | by Pa Ikhide

  Here in my part of America, the leaves are falling, the heart stirs and I am restless. There are […]

Binyavanga Wainaina’s Granta Essay is Beautifully Experimental

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Binyavanga Wainaina has a new essay in Granta‘s latest travel issue. The title of the essay is “Everything Was Suddening […]

Art Chasing Life Blatantly | Review of Chibundu Onuzo’s Welcome to Lagos | by Kola Tubosun

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For almost two-thirds of Chibundu Onuzo’s new book, one searches in vain to find the source of the title, Welcome […]

Namwali Serpell on the Beauty and Uses of Being an Outsider

Screen Shot 2017-02-19 at 11.12.35 PM

Some of you may remember Namwali Serpell as the 2015 winner of the Caine Prize for African Writing. She teaches […]

A Shared Sea: Tsitsi Dangarembga and Zora Neale Hurston | By Salimah Valiani

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  Tsitsi Dangarembga’s 1988 novel, Nervous Conditions, the story of Tambudzai, other girl-children, and women of Babamukuru’s family in 1970s […]

Love Stories from Africa | Read the New Anthology Celebrating Love and Romance

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  The annual release of a Valentine stories anthology has become a tradition of sorts, something exciting to look forward […]