A reflection on Tram 83 by Fiston Mwanza Mujila that sets the novel in the context of African and world literature.
I just finished reading a fascinating appetizer to John Carlin’s new book on Nelson Mandela, Knowing Mandela.
Some months ago when news of Mandela’s illness began to trickle into the media I decided to try and ensure that my 12-year-old knew something about the great man beyond the coverage to be found on the news.
Is there something to be said for looking at Facebook as one of a long genealogy of modes of reader/viewer identification?
I first met Kofi Awoonor as an excitable 17-year-old high school student then in the Sixth Form.
Allow me to take undue advantage of double vision and describe Oxford Street from the perspective of an erstwhile denizen of Accra as well as that of someone who has lived abroad for many years.
The evidence of material on African cities does not inspire confidence. They are increasingly overcrowded with no clear plan for matching population growth to available facilities. Sewage and garbage disposal are perennial problems. The hope some five decades ago when many countries gained freedom from their former colonial masters was that the cities would act as engines of growth.
Readers of Things Fall Apart will recall the moment in the penultimate chapter of the novel when the gathering of the people of Umuofia is rudely interrupted by messengers from the white man. The messengers are confronted by Okonkwo, who happens to have taken a position at the very edge of the gathering.
Ato Quayson is Professor of English and Director of the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies at the University of Toronto, where he has been since August 2005. He did his BA at the University of Ghana and took his PhD from Cambridge University in 1995. He then went on to the University of Oxford as a Research Fellow, returning to Cambridge in Sept 1995 to become a Fellow at Pembroke College and a member of the Faculty of English where he eventually became a Reader in Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies.