Forthcoming from Cassava Republic Press—globally on 16 October, 2018 and in the US on 7 November, 2018—Nigerian writer and art critic Emmanuel Iduma’s A Stranger’s Pose is a mix of memoir, travelogue, and photography: an expansion of travel writing in African literature, a genre with little published in it so far.
At 208 pages, A Stranger’s Pose is a immersive journey, in assuredly paced, transportive prose and striking photographs, across more than 20 African cities. The book, already named by Electric Literature as “one to watch,” comes with a foreword by Teju Cole, who has memorably called it a “Dream of a perfect book, a ballad with all the lyrics remembered.”
It further comes with blurbs by poet-professor-novelist Chris Abani (“Emmanuel Iduma writes with lyricism and stunning clarity, a lush yet elegant style that resists categorization… Only one word can hold it all, beautiful. This book is beautiful.”), and David Levi Strauss, author of Words Not Spent Today Buy Smaller Images Tomorrow (“Iduma’s book is a marvel.”). Noo Saro-Wiwa, author of Looking for Transwonderland: Travels in Nigeria, Nigeria’s best known travel literature book, has also described Iduma as “a refreshing new voice in travel writing.”
Find out more about A Stranger’s Pose from our coverage in July:
Based both on his experiences and the stories he heard on the road, Iduma’s observation of fleeting encounters captures the melancholy that comes from travelling alone, and in a time when, despite increased social connections, the world is heating up in conversations around loneliness. There are beautiful vignettes on the photographers, people, and migrants—including those making the treacherous journey to Europe—in search of home, safety and self-exploration. There are also illuminations of his difficulties travelling between different African cities, of his struggles to find visas, of his meeting with a Malian and perpetual intra-Africa migrant Idrissa, of the cost of intra-continental travel, and of the alienation of moving between languages—altogether an exposition of how divided Africa is. Iduma’s use of photographs extends his engagement of questions about love, life, migration, translation, heart-break, and personal tragedy. In the end, what we have is a reinvention of the notion of African travel writing: the continent through the eyes of a decolonised millennial.
Watch the trailer below:
For media enquiries about Emmanuel Iduma’s A Stranger’s Pose and interview requests, please contact Lynette Lisk at Cassava Republic Press via [email protected].