October 6, 2022


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Oxford University: Black publishers to headline literary festival

Bloomsbury publisher, Alexandra Pringle; Britain’s first black female book publisher, Margaret Busby; Professor Akachi Adimora -Ezeigbo, and British publisher of African Studies, James Currey, are among authors headlining the inaugural James Currey Literary Festival at the University of Oxford this September.

Announcing the event, the festival director, Onyeka Nwelue, who spoke to The PUNCH said the event was scheduled to take place from September 1 to September 3, 2022, at Sir Victor Blank Lecture Theatre, Weston Library, University of Oxford, London.

Nwelue said, “The festival is free and will take place from September 1 to 3, 2022, at Sir Victor Blank Lecture Theatre, Weston Library, University of Oxford.

“The festival honours the enormous but little-known contributions to the development of African literature made by James Currey, founder of the famous African Writers Series. It is organised by the Oxford-based James Currey Society.”

Nwelue also stated that the discussion by the headliners would be centred on ‘publishing African literature.’

He said, “Pringle will be on one of the festival’s flagship panels, alongside Busby and Ezeigbo, discussing publishing African literature and how this important undertaking has evolved.

“Veteran Nigerian novelist, former politician, and former president of the Association of Nigerian Authors, Dr. Wale Okediran, will also talk about his new work, while novelists, Ikenna Okeh, Stephen Embleton, Ever Obi, and writers Kadija Sesay, Timi Ovuru, Javier Gutiérrez Lozano, Okwiri Oduor, Suraj Yengde, Keith Richards, Shola Adenekan, Sonny Iroche, Lydia Idakula, Dianne Regisford, Uche Anyanwagu, Nky Iweka, Obinna Odenigbo, and Ayodele Arigbabu will join in conversations cutting across a range of published works and topics.”

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According to Nwelue, South African writer, Niq Mhlongo, will feature in conversations alongside Nigerian crime fiction writer, Leye Adenle.

He said, “Joining the line-up are Ikhide Ikheloa, Efe Paul-Azino, Miles Larmer, Jahman Anikulapo, Aderemi Adegbite, Debbie Edwards, Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, Akin Alabi, and literary agent, Emma Shercliff.”

Also featuring at the festival would be the announcement of the winner of the 2022 James Currey Prize for African Literature, established by Nigerian writer, filmmaker, founder of the James Currey Society, and Academic Visitor at the African Studies Centre, University of Oxford, Onyeka Nwelue.