Book Reviews / Articles

Suspense in Southern Africa: Mukuka Chipanta’s Five Nights Before the Summit | A Review by Gilbert Braspenning

Although typified in some blurbs as crime fiction, Mukuka Chipanta’s second novel is so much more than that: it is also a well-crafted historical novel. Detective Maxwell Chanda, head of the Special Crimes Investigation Unit, is tasked with the investigation of the brutal murders of Laura and Henry Hinckley, a white British couple living on […]

Ancient Egyptian Literature | A Review by Muff Andersson

Ancient Egyptian Literature (2019), Miriam Lichtheim (Ed.), University of California Press, 872p., ISBN: 9780520305847 Who was the imagined readership of the pyramid and coffin texts? Did ancient Egyptians carve their autobiographies in the tombs for the living or the dead? What does their papyri poetry tell us about their society, can their sarcophagi stories compare […]

The Markas – An Anthology of Literary Works on Boko Haram | A Review by Françoise Ugochukwu

The Markas is the first anthology on the Boko Haram insurgency, which has blighted northern Nigeria for the past 10 years, causing the death and dislocation of millions. Responding to the perceived world’s apathy, its “loud silence” (pp.16-17), and the absence of memorabilia, the four editors, three of whom are posted at the University of […]

J’ai couru vers le Nil d’Alaa El Aswany | Une critique de Caroline Janssen

Comment un littérateur engagé peut-il rendre hommage aux manifestants de la Place Tahrir? Comment peut-il figer dans le temps le moment fugitif et formidable des événements qui s’y sont déroulés en janvier 2011? Dans son dernier roman ‘J’ai couru vers le Nil’, l’auteur cairote Alaa el Aswany nous explique comment, inspiré par la ‘révolution de […]

Race, Decolonization and Global Citizenship in South Africa | A Review by Elke Seghers

Race, Decolonization, and Global Citizenship in South Africa (2018) by Chielozona Eze takes Nelson Mandela’s vision of global citizenship in the decolonized South Africa as a starting point to examine a range of texts imagining post-apartheid South Africa. This idealistic project is “designed to provide a cohesive argument for an inclusive humanity rooted in empathy” […]

Writing Spatiality in West Africa: Colonial Legacies in the Anglophone/Francophone Novel | A Review by John Masterson

2018 was a productive year for Madhu Krishnan. It saw the publication of Contingent Canons: African Literature and the Politics of Location, as well as Writing Spatiality in West Africa: Colonial Legacies in the Anglophone/Francophone novel. As Krishnan maintains with clarity and conviction in the latter stages of this timely intervention, her scholarship is written […]

A Review of Trifonia Melibea Obono’s La Bastarda | James J. Davis

I was interested in reviewing La Bastarda primarily because it was written by a writer, Trifonia Melibea Obono, from Equatorial Guinea with whom I was not familiar. Equatorial Guinea is often referred to as the only Sub-Saharan African country with Spanish as its official language. I assumed that the text was in Spanish and that […]

Oor Jolyn Phillips se bundel radbraak (2017) | Louise Viljoen

Een van die boeiendste debute van die afgelope tyd in die Afrikaans poësie was dié van Jolyn Phillips wat in 2017 die bundel radbraak gepubliseer het. ’n Mens kan ’n verskeidenheid temas en preokkupasies in hierdie bundel identifiseer: die skildering van ’n bepaalde fisiese landskap en sosio-ekonomiese ruimte waarbinne die spreker in die bundel se […]

The World behind the Looking Glass. De representatie van het subject, ‘the other’ en de time/space-verhoudingen in Zuid-Afrikaanse speculative fiction | Laura Engels

It’s fascinating how, as a species and as a culture, we are brilliant at imagining our own extinction and our own demise. You know, we make films about whether we are all wiped out by zombies, or nuclear bombs, or diseases, or robots, or aliens, or little funny Gremlins, all sorts of things. We are […]

Voelers van die kakkerlak: Jeroen Bosch in Suid-Afrika | Daniel Hugo

Die vondste wat ek van tyd tot tyd in tweehandseboekwinkels maak, het my al groot vreugde verskaf. Maar soms ontdek ek iets op my eie boekrak wat my literêre voelers in vervoering bring. Wat is ’n bibliofiel dan anders as ’n snuffelende kakkerlak wat deur die bindgom van boeke aangelok word? Op soek na ’n […]