Podcast: Print Activism in 21st-century Africa

On Dec 1, The Mantle's editor in chief Shaun Randol and our author Emmanuel Iduma (The Sound of Things to Come) participated in a panel discussion at the Draper Program at NYU, along with Madhu Krishnan, assistant professor of 20th/ 21st-century postcolonial writing at the University of Bristol. Michael C. Vazquez, senior editor at Bidoun: Art and Culture from the Middle East, moderated. S.S. Sandhu of the Colloquium for Unpopular Culture hosted. Krishnan is the guest editor of the latest edition of Wasafiri, the theme of which inspired the conversation. 

About the event: 

Chaired by Michael C. Vazquez, this event shines a spotlight on pathways linking pivotal journals such as Transition, Drum, Black Images, Joe, Staffrider and Black Orpheus to current trends in African and African diasporic book publishing, pathways marked by an enduring fidelity to print - an expanded and increasingly hybrid entity - as a means of exchanging ideas.

At the same time, where bookshops and independent publishers such as New Beacon and Bogle L’Ouverture in London, Presence Africaine in Paris or Third World Press in Chicago once flourished as hubs for political and intellectual thought, the digital mediascape now provides unprecedented space and means - utilised by the likes of Chimurenga, Kwani?, Farafina, Brittle Paper and Jalada - to raise unpopular voices and form complex communities of writers and readers.

Emmanuel Iduma​ was born and raised in Nigeria. Emmanuel is the author of The Sound of Things to Come. He received an MFA in art criticism and writing from the School of Visual Arts, New York.

Shaun Randol founded The Mantle in 2009. Today he is the Editor-in-Chief and Publisher. You can email him at shaun [at] themantle.net. Shaun is the co-editor of Gambit: Newer African Writing.