Beatrice Lamwaka (born and raised in Alokolum, Gulu) is a Ugandan writer. She was shortlisted for the 2011 Caine Prize for her story “Butterfly Dreams”. She is the founder and director of the Arts Therapy Foundation,[ a non-profit organisation that provides psychological and emotional support through creative arts therapies. She is the general secretary of PEN Uganda Chapter and an executive member of the Uganda Reproduction Rights Organisation (URRO). She has served on the executive board of the Uganda Women Writers Association (FEMRITE), where she has been a member since 1998. Lamwaka’s writing has been translated into Spanish and Italian; she released her anthology of short stories Butterfly Dreams and Other Stories in 2016. Continue reading “Interview with Beatrice Lamwaka on Butterfly Dreams and Other Stories”
Nakisanze Segawa was born in the Luwero Triangle, Uganda. She is both a fiction writer and a Luganda performance poet. Her poetry and short stories have been published by Jalada and FEMRITE. Nakisanze is a contributor to both the Daily Monitor and Global Press Journal.
A. What was your motivation in writing this novel?
N.S I always thought that Buganda has interesting stories to tell but I also thought that Kabaka Mwanga was a fascinating person… I came across an article that told me his age, he was a teenager when he came to the thrown, and that triggered me into wondering what I would have done if I had been in his shoes, but also what his subjects at the time thought, and the challenges he had from every side Continue reading “Interview with Nakisanze Segawa on her novel ‘The Triangle’”
Witty, shy and quirky were the three words that came to mind upon meeting Irenosen Okojie. Her début novel Butterfly fish, found its way to my desk- unannounced. Replacing my customary pick- me- up, I was intoxicated by its rich imaginative ardour. Butterfly fish by Irenosen Okojie came out in 2016 and is a smooth literary hooch, with a dark personality and complex finish.
Translation is a mammoth but necessary task. Oftentimes the translator, who also acts as the mediator between the text and it’s designated readers, brings his or her own understanding to the original text being translated. Though a growing feature within African literature, it is less still talked about. Afrikult. caught up with Dr. Ida Hadjivayanis in 2016 to discuss her Kiswahili translation Alisi Ndani ya Nchi ya Ajabu, of Alice In Wonderland written by Lewis Carroll. Continue reading “Interview with Dr. Ida Hadjivayanis on Kiswahili Translation”
Upon winning the 2015 Etisalat prize for literature, for his novel Tram 83, Fiston Mwanza Mujila has been on the lips of many literary pundits and enthusiasts as a rising star. As we impatiently await the announcement of the Man Booker Prize shortlist 2016, many speculate whether the name Fiston Mwanza Mujila will once again emerge out of the judges’ hat. In spite of this, it is best to remind ourselves that it is not so much the prizes that defines a good piece of literature, but the originality of form and ingenuity. In Tram 83, the writer works into his novel the rhythm of jazz and soul, with tenors of thrilling fast pace Afro beat like action, sketching a captivating portrait of the human landscape. In the words of the famous novelist Alain Mabanckou, “When I turned the last page, I exclaimed: This is a masterpiece!”
A. How did you first get into translation?
A.N.S Translation never really existed for me until I had to make a living; I dropped out of secondary school at fifteen, then spent my early twenties in and out of universities until I started to work as a literary translator, and I’ve been doing that ever since. Three or four novels a year. Yet before all that, I simply read books in the languages I was fluent in and I didn’t think it worth considering whether a text had to be read in its original language or not. Continue reading “Interview on Translation with André Naffis-Sahely”
A. How did the idea for Satans and Shaitans come about?
O.U I began writing the novel in 2007 but it wasn’t Satans and Shaitans back then, it was a book titled The Clutch Pencil. I was an Engineering student, and one day this lecturer came to class with a clutch pencil. I wondered if it was possible that someone mischievous could unscrew the pencil, remove the pencil lead and insert a poisoned needle, and with that commit some murder – that was how the idea was born. Continue reading “Interview with Obinna Udenwe on Satans and Shaitans”
Frances Mensah Williams has bedazzled high street book retailers, with readers buzzing like bees to honey in light of the arrival of her début novel From Pasta to Pigfoot. Behind her quiet and receptive demeanour lies flourishing rivulets of creativity. As you know, wherever there’s a good story Afrikult. must follow the trail to its source. The Afrikult. team caught up with the author in 2015 to find out more about herself and her book- of course. Continue reading “Interview with Frances Mensah Williams on her novel From Pasta to Pigfoot”
For those who have not heard the name- Brian Chikwava – is the author of Harare North. His début novel Harare North, published in 2010, recounts the experience of Zimbabwean migrants squatting in the decrepit quarters of Brixton. Brian has developed a narrative style uniquely his own, his use of language is elegantly provincial, reflective of the sub cultural disposition of his characters. His short story “Seventh Street Alchemy” was awarded the 2004 Caine Prize for African Writing. Afrikult. caught up with Brian in 2015 to chat about his work… Continue reading “Interview with Brian Chikwava on his novel ‘Harare North’”
At the beginning of the New Year in 2015, Afrikult. caught up with Valerie Brandes, the founder of Jacaranda Books, in the quaint and green suburbs of West Hampstead. Jacaranda Books is an independent publishing house that aims to create a platform for underrepresented voices from a wide cultural heritage, but with a particular focus on works related to Africa, Caribbean, and the Diaspora. Jacaranda was founded on January 2012 and judging by the wide array of subject matter, distinctive and diverse artistic provenance of its books, it’s safe to say that this small and young independent publishing house is certainly worth watching out for. Continue reading “Interview with Valerie Brandes of Jacaranda Books”