Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 3,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."

It’s almost two years since Uzodinma Iweala, author of Beasts of No Nation, graced the cover of Guardian Life Magazine, the weekend edition of The Guardian, Nigeria. [read here if you missed it.] The most recent literary figure to be a cover star is Lola Shoneyin, Nigerian novelist, literary entrepreneur, and festival organizer.

The issue features a fashion editorial that has Shoneyin looking stunning in a burst of colorful ankara print outfits complemented with bold lip colors. In the accompanying interview, Shoneyin shares thoughtful comments on a whole range of issues. She shares her views on feminism. As she see it, when the term “feminism” is stripped down to its bare essentials, it is really about creating opportunities for women and giving them the power of choice. Here is the quote:

“Opportunities that are available to men, have to be available to women. I feel we do a great disservice as a country by not letting women flourish, by not giving them the opportunity to do what they want to do; I think we suffer, we are less productive, we are less powerful or empowered economically. It’s about choice as well; when you’re an adult, it’s about ‘what do I really want to do?’ not ‘what does society want me to do?’ not ‘what do my parents want me to do?’ and not ‘what does my husband want me to do?…Being able to choose is very important; being able to be economically empowered is very important and independent; being able to say, ‘I want to be a politician’ and be able to go for it and not need to compromise yourself in any way, is very important.”

She also notes during the interview that the Ake Arts and Book Festival is not about making profit but about stimulating literary culture by providing affordable books, an open, intellectual space for thought, and empowering aspiring writers. More broadly, she sees Ake Festival and all the amazing works she does with Book Buzz Foundation and Quidah Books as contributing to creating conditions for people to think, create ideas, and explore their potentials. “If there was more space for people to think to do things and create,” she insists, “I just feel we would all be happier.”

Here are a few shots from the photo shoot. Click here to read the full interview and see more photographs.

 

 

********

All image via Guardian Life Magazine

Tags: , , ,

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.

One Response to “Lola Shoneyin Is a Cover Star on Guardian Life Magazine” Subscribe

  1. Mike 2017/12/17 at 16:08 #

    Could perceive somebody not wanting to be torn to pieces by saying “Cover Girl”. But “Cover” would just do. Good interview. Congratulations on The Caine Prize panel.

Leave a Reply

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.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

What Is Literary Androgyny? Diriye Osman Tells Us

Diriye_Osman_Picture

Describing himself as “first Somali, second Muslim, third gay,” the enchanting Diriye Osman is arguably the most fascinating writer on […]

50 Years Later, the Swedish Academy Unveils the 70 Nominees for the 1967 Nobel Prize in Literature

nobel prize - new republic

As is their tradition, the Swedish Academy, custodians and givers of the Nobel Prize in Literature, have, 50 years after […]

The Johannesburg Review of Books Vol. 1, Issue 8 | Featuring Soyinka, J.M. Coetzee, Yewande Omotoso, Nthikeng Mohlele, Niq Mhlongo, Bongani Madondo

library - christian community in johannesburg

The 8th issue of The Johannesburg Review of Books was released last December. The issue, which is from the magazine’s […]

Opportunity for African Writers | Enter for Africa Book Club’s Short Story Competition

opportunity-for-african-writers-1-2

The Africa Book Club Short Reads Competition is open to submissions. African writers can enter fiction or nonfiction pieces of […]

Keorapetse “Bra Willie” Kgositsile: South Africa Begins 3-Day “Special Official Funeral” for Late National Poet Laureate

library - christian community in johannesburg

To honour the country’s late National Poet Laureate, Keorapetse “Bra Willie” Kgositsile, the government of South Africa has commenced a three-day […]

See the Gorgeous Cover for LGBTQI Art Collective 14’s Volume 2, Featuring Snippets from Taiye Selasi and Gbenga Adesina

IMG-20180113-WA0006

The Nigerian queer art collective 14, which is set to release its second volume this week, has shared its cover, […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.