Who do you need to follow on twitter to make sure you have a global handle on world events? Every year, Foreign Policy Magazine publishes a list of 100 people to help you decide.
To be on that list is no mean feat. You are essentially the top hundred in a mass of 500 million users. It also means having your name listed alongside people like Bill Clinton and Pope Francis as the top influencers and producers of ideas in the world.
That’s why it’s so cool that not one but two African novelists made it to the list. Nigeria’s Teju Cole and Kenya’s Wainaina Binyavanga came under the Africa section, alongside four others, most of whom are journalists.
Teju Cole, who is a verified twitter user, has an eye-popping 104,660 followers. He’s become something of a twitter phenomenon ever since the days of his Small Fates and, subsequently, the drone tweets.
At 7,698, the number of Binyavanga’s followers are a bit more modest, but the author of the fictional memoir, One Day I’ll Write About This Place, is one of the foremost voices in the African literary Twitterville.
It’s not the Booker Prize or anything like that. Notwithstanding, congrats is very much in order 🙂
Complete Africa List:
Teju Cole (@tejucole): Nigerian-born novelist who hops between Lagos and Brooklyn.
Howard French (@hofrench): Journalism professor; former New York Times correspondent in Africa and China.
Calestous Juma (@calestous): Kenyan-born professor at the Harvard Kennedy School and authority on science and technology in Africa.
Andrew Mwenda (@AndrewMwenda): Managing editor of Uganda’s Independent magazine; aid critic.
Lydia Polgreen (@lpolgreen): New York Times bureau chief in Johannesburg; formerly in New Delhi.
Binyavanga Wainaina (@BinyavangaW): Kenyan author and director of the Chinua Achebe Center for African Writers and Artists at Bard College.