Something has really been bothering me about the US Presidential Election. We all know the questions asked from the beginning about Sen. Obama have been centered around experiance and his race. Now that the experience question has almost vanished and been substituted with the patriot question, thanks to Sarah Palin, race is still on the table and the "great unknown".
Some cool news from Rwanda last week that hasn't been reported much. The small African nation now officially has the largest female majority parliament---in the world! The Speaker of the House is also a woman, Ms Mukantabana Rose and all were sworn in by President Kagame.
So the head of the Nobel Prize in Literature, Horace Engdahl made the comment that no great writers come from America anymore because they're all pretty much from Europe. Specifically:
"Europe still is the center of the literary world."
Hmm, well that's great. Except that it ignores the rich history of writers from...ohhh...every other corner of the globe! So I thought I'd do a little post about my fave African writers. Including my mentor and former professor (ok don't mean to name drop, but what the heck!)
One of my favorite writers. He's an amazing writer who was a "founding father" as it were, and helped African writers gain international prestige. He's key contributions span decades and include: Weep Not Child (1964)
Petals of Blood (1978), Decolonizing the Mind (1986), the latter being my favorite.
Her coming of age novel "Nervous Conditions" is so powerful and a true Afropolitan tale, complete with alienation, homecoming, struggle for acceptance, cultural pride/shame, you name it. I would encourage everyone to pick it up. She is also a filmmaker and made Everyone’s Child (1996)
I find it cool that many High Schools in America require Things Fall Apart (1958) as required reading a long with "the classics". Considered the father of the African novel in English. Also wrote, No Longer at Ease, (1960), Arrow of God, (1964), Anthills of the Savannah, (1988)
Poet, intellectual, playwright, Nobel Laureate (haha! take that Engdahl!) Love his poems including Mandela’s Earth and Other Poems (1988)
Writer, filmmaker, intellectual (who passed away in June 2007). He's seen as the father of African cinema. Check out his flicks, Black Girl (1966), Xala (1974). But his novels are, The Black Docker (1952), Gods Bits of Wood (1962). Good stuff.
There's quite a few that I'm leaving out. Especially women *gasp* Anyone have any of their favorite authors to add? I will do a diaspora post separately.
First check out this great mini-documentary on Ory Okolloh. If you don't know who she is she's Kenyan Pundit, and was a crucial voice during the Kenyan Elections Crisis, he blog being one of the go to sites for updates and news during the great time of uncertainty.
Second, check out my other blog that I've cranked up into high gear. Its called Afropundit and its a blog for people of color to come and post/vent/wax philosophical about politics/culture etc. So far we're focused on the US Elections. If you're interested in doing a guest post, let me know. Got four people on board so far.