African Writing: Celebrating Africa through Story

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Africa Day, the day designated to celebrate African Unity is on 25th May this year. Events are taking place throughout Ireland from 19th – 25th May. The highlight being Africa Day Dublin, a fun-filled family festival celebrating African culture in Farmleigh, Phoenix Park.

Why not celebrate Africa Day with a good book? We have selected a few books here to help you celebrate Africa through story.

Book cover Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe Book cover: Lyrics Alley by Leila Aboulela Book cover: The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna  Book cover: Zoo City by Lauren Beukes

Some recommended books

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (1958)
Modern classic of African literature. This powerful book dealing with change verses tradition is a must read.

The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna (2010)
Set in Freetown, Sierra Leone in the aftermath of the Civil War. Shortlisted for the 2012 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award

Lyrics Alley by Leila Aboulela (2010)
Family saga set in 1950s Sudan in the lead up to independence and travelling to Egypt and post-war Britain.

Zoo City by Lauren Beukes (2010)
Dystopian novel set in Johannesburg. Winner of the 2011 Arthur C Clarke Award

The Blinding Absence of Light Ben Jelloun Tahar (2002)
Based on fact, this novel charts the appalling concentration camps of King Hassan II of Morocco. Winner of 2004 International IMPAC Dublin Award

Book cover: Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Some recommended authors

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria)

Ben Okri (Nigeria)

Has written fifteen novels including:

Susan Mann (South Africa)

JM Coetzee (South Africa)

Has written fourteen novels including:

Book cover: The Cairo Trilogy by Naguib MahfouzSome books and series based in Africa

See Also

Granta 92, the magazine of new writing, The View from Africa edited by Ian Jack

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