Ghanaian-British editor and publisher Margaret Busby was awarded an honorary degree by Oxford Brookes University this September.
Busby wholeheartedly deserves this honor due to her pioneering efforts in the world of book publishing. Born in Ghana, she graduated from Bedford College, London University. She became Britain’s youngest and first Black woman publisher when she co-founded Allison & Busby in the late 1960s, where she has published many authors including Rosa Guy, C. L. R. James, Michael Moorcock and Jill Murphy.
She has won many prestigious awards including the Royal Society of Literature’s Benson Medal, the Royal African Society’s inaugural Africa Writes Lifetime Achievement Award, and the London Book Fair Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2020 she was voted one of the “100 Great Black Britons”.
She is not only an outstanding publisher who strives to include new voices, but also an excellent editor and writer. She edited the anthology Daughters of Africa (1992), and its 2019 follow-up New Daughters of Africa. She has also written drama for BBC radio and the stage and judged many prizes including the Booker.
Busby is the current president of English PEN and an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. She is also a member of the Advisory Board for the Oxford International Centre for Publishing and has served on the boards of the Africa Centre, Royal Literary Fund, Wasafiri magazine, Nubian Jak Community Trust, and Tomorrow’s Warriors.
Congrats to Busby on the honorary degree!