Emmanuel Iduma

What does it mean to be an African writer? And why is this question still being asked? The world may know the literary giants Chinua Achebe, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, and Wole Soyinka, but their work does not stand for an entire continent. In this fragmented essay, Emmanuel Iduma muses on the intersection of modernity and the writerly experience, and the great writing sure to emerge from that complex nexus.

Shaun Randol

In the opening scene of Children in Reindeer Woods, Rafael and some fellow soldiers come across a farm. The soldiers murder its civilian occupants (men, women, and children) in cold blood. We learn nothing more of the newly deceased. Rafael then turns on his cohorts, dispatching them with ease and without remorse. This is the last killing he will do, he hopes. Rafael is tired of war.

Shaun Randol

The short-run production of The Builder Association's "House / Divided," directed by Marianne Weems, opens with a narrator reading the captivating introduction to John Steinbeck's masterpiece, the Grapes of Wrath:

Emmanuel Iduma

I will argue for a new Nigerian literary order.

Suppose we call this ‘neo-literariness’, for want of a better word, and because in hyphenation a word acquires two identities. So, neo-literariness is the word to use for a generation of writers and enthusiasts who function despite institutional lapses, and whose artistic engagement thrives of new ways of being, especially web-technology.

I will explain with a few examples.

World Policy Journal


by Natasha Yarotskaya

Russia by mind comprehended cannot be

Nor by wide arshins measured:

Its uniqueness be that—

In Russia is possible only but to believe.

(Tiutchev, I. 28 November, 1866, translation by Fr. S. Janos)


Emmanuel Iduma

Ayodele is one of the most consistent Nigerian writers of the last half-decade. She’s the oldest writer in the Gambit series, although I wouldn’t want to ask her if she’s comfortable being grouped with younger colleagues. I figure that question would be answered with a wave of her hand; Ayodele gives the impression that even the most obvious of borders doesn’t exist. Meeting her in person, I was drawn to her infinite knowledge about everyone and everything in the literary world.

Vicente Garcia Groyon

Kei Miller’s second novel, The Last Warner Woman (published in 2010 but released in the United States earlier this year) seems to strike up a dialogue with his first novel

Arie Amaya-Akkermans

Arie Amaya-Akkermans

Emmanuel Iduma

We began with an oral conversation, recorded with my phone, in her sitting room, since we happened to be in Ile-Ife together at the moment. A conversation that cannot be made public, at least for now, for the simple fact that we were so self-aware, so within the cocoon of our ‘literary ties.’ When I used those wordsliterary tiesAyobami had a good laugh; earlier I had mentioned that I couldn’t extricate our friendship from our creative comradeship. This friendship, which has now spanned close to five years, began simply, when I asked her if she writes.