Where is the Great African Novel?
I’m late bringing you May/June happenings, pardon me.
In case you missed the International dialogue we organized on 31st May at Fairway Hotel, Kampala, from 5-7pm, here’s a chance to feed your eyes, at least. We had policy makers, educationalists, poets, novelists, playwrights, folklorists, cultural critics, editors, students, aspiring writers, readers, supporters, partners and friends of AWT.
It was free, beloveds. How do you miss a wonderful thing like that?
Truth is, there are many outstanding African novels that were written and published. Think Ayi Kwei Armah, Nuruddin Farah, Elechi Amadi, Wole Soyinka, Bessie Head, Buchi Emecheta, Nadine Gordimer, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Mariama Ba, Yvonne Vera, Chinua Achebe, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Ben Okri, Doris Lessing, Moses Isegawa, Zakes Mda, Chimamanda Adichie, Ama Ata Aidoo, Nawal El Saadawi…God, I can easily drop a thousand names!
What we are saying is that that’s not enough, especially from the Generation Y/dot.com generation, through Generation Z. (I wonder what those born after Generation Z will be called. Maybe back to letter A, or will it be the end of the world?) Anyway, that’s the context. When you analyze country by country, the numbers of great writers/novels dwindle, even among the Generation X, and the ones before that. We are looking at a billion people who populate the continent, so we need at least a million great novels. We are watching all generations, but mostly the dot.com generation for the Great African Novels,