Arts/Culture

A Book Collector’s Journal

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Shortly after the lockdown began in March 2020, I began buying more books. This started innocently perhaps facilitated by boredom; there were some new titles that had just been released that I wanted to read. Some were books of writer friends I was interested in supporting or reviewing. Others were titles I had come across […]

Thoughts on Poetry for World Poetry Day – 2021

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For World Poetry Day 2021 today, we ask some of our leading contemporary writers to give their thoughts on what work of poetry they will recommend that everyone read at least once in their lifetime. Here are the responses: There is a long and rich history of poetry coming from all the different countries and […]

Coming 2 America: The Times have Changed and Eddie Murphy is Unaware

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When the announcement was made that a sequel to the 1988 box office hit, Coming to America was going to be released, there were some positive expectations from the audience of this Black Hollywood movie classic as well as a disappointment that a work of such seeming perfection is about to be damaged. One factor […]

Bob‌ ‌Hearts‌ ‌Abishola:‌ ‌Fear‌ ‌Yorùbá  ‌Women‌

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There is a genre of jokes dedicated to Yorùbá women and it is not hard to come by these days. The jokes branch out into sub-genres suited to the different social situations within the Yorùbá  women demography. There is enough slander to distribute between spinsters, rich aunts, married women, single mothers and immigrants. The consensus is […]

Intimate Strangers, Farewell Amor

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The compelling  opening scene of Farewell Amor is set in one of the arrival gates of the John F. Kennedy international airport in New York. A Brooklyn taxi driver (Walter), played by Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine, is clutching a bunch of flowers and a gift bag while pacing the floors nervously. He is soon joined […]

Our Books of 2020

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We asked some of our readers and authors what books made the most impact on them. These are books published at any time but in whose pages they found something to keep them going during this annus horribilis, a year that tested the world’s patience, resilience, health, and resolve. Here’s the result. Akin Adéṣọ̀kàn, Professor […]

A Crisis Like no Other

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It was after class period and we were in the Chapel for afternoon prayers when the Rector of my school, St Joseph’s Minor Seminary (or SJS as we called it) Zaria, stormed in like he had lost his way; his face furrowed with fear. It was ominous seeing such a gigantic figure running in that […]

OlongoAfrica to Me

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I’d always loved writing, and curating them, and interrogating those who produce them. It’s a life-affirming thing. We are made by stories, so listening to others tell theirs or showing us how they get to set them down, or doing so myself, is a delightful experience. Has always been. From 2009, I had a travel […]

Kúnlé Afọláyan’s Trash Case in ‘Citation’

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Nollywood is the trash’s last leaves, claims Kenneth Harrow  in the last chapter of his seminal book, Trash: African Cinema from Below. Among its audience and even in academic circles, most Nollywood films have been critiqued as trash-coated with dry dialogues, melodramatic moments, and poor cinematography. Many of these discussions about the poor vision in […]

Gnawa Music and the Making of Dark-skinned Moroccan Identity

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Morocco’s reputation as a demographically heterogeneous country is perhaps one of its internationally recognizable characteristics. The presence of many ethnic groups, mainly dark-skinned people, is clear proof that traces of the Trans-Saharan trade are still unquestionably vivid. Ostrich eggs, salt, and jewelry were among the goods traded across the Sahara. Nevertheless, those, unfortunately, were not […]