Africa Writes is one of the UK’s most influential platforms for African literature. Organized by the Royal African Society, the event brings the best of African literary culture to readers in London by assembling writers, publishers, and other industry folks from around the world.
This year, the festival, which officially kicked off yesterday, will run up until October 24. Due to the on-going pandemic, this edition of the festival is a hybrid of virtual and in-person. The in-person event will take place at the British Library and 180 The Strand. Some of the featured writers include festival headliner Mona Eltahawy and Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah whose book The Sex Lives of African Women is making waves globally. Also expect to see South African visual artist Sethembile Msezane, British-Jamaican poet Raymond Antrobus and Sierra Leonean interdisciplinary artist Julianknxx.
Two highly anticipated anthologies will be featured at the festival. In Of This Our Country: Acclaimed Nigerian Writers on the Home, Identity and Culture They Know, Nigerian writers reflect on nation and identity. Wild Imperfections: An Anthology of Womanist Poems is edited by South African poet Natalia Molebatsi and catalogues poems by “Black women and womxn poets from Botswana to Brazil.” In the panels, attendees will meet some of the featured authors and the editors.
Also not to be missed is the panel on fantasy and realism featuring Nii Ayikwei-Parkes, Boakyewaa Glover, and Afia Atakora. Celebrated Ugandan poet Stella Nyanzi will discuss radical African writing in the context of activism. Wana Udobang’s recently launched Comfort Food workshop is also on the schedule.
Enjoy this short video of the festival and follow this link to see the full schedule of panels, lectures, interviews, masterclasses and performances. You will also find information on how to purchase tickets and day passes.