BALOBESHAYI

African Women Voices

Are Novels on Africa Offering Us Poverty-Porn?

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What comes to mind when I say “Africa”? Is it the dressless child with flies all over his face? Maybe a woman thin as only problematic anorexic models can be, but carrying tanks of waters on their heads?
These are just some of the images so reiterate in the media and that are now part of our culture and imagination genome. We might never have been to Africa and yet we think we know what it’s like. Part of the blame should be put on the shoulders of award winning African writer, says this article from the Guardian. The piece comments on the 2011 Caine Prize recipient, Noviolet Bulawayo and her story, We need new names.

The conclusion of the British broadpaper is both fascinating and arguable:

The world is a dark and ugly place, a lot of that ugliness and injustice is present in Africa, but we don’t turn to literature to confirm that. The news is enough. What we turn to literature for is its ability to transport us beyond the headlines.

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2 comments on “Are Novels on Africa Offering Us Poverty-Porn?

  1. Darkowaa
    28 August 2015

    Noviolet Bulawayo is the 2011 Caine Prize recipient, not 2015 lol. Hmm, this book annoyed me on so many levels… I shall post my review of it soon!

    • Thanks for the correction. Please do share your review soon, I’ll be happy to repost it and looking forward for your view on the book!

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This entry was posted on 27 August 2015 by in Ethnic Minorities, News, Review, Women and tagged , , , , .
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