Binyavanga wainaina how to write about africa summary plan

She can have no past, no history; such diversions ruin the dramatic moment.

Binyavanga wainaina how to write about africa summary plan

Or corrupt politicians, inept polygamous travel-guides, and prostitutes you have slept with. It is hot and dusty with rolling grasslands and huge herds of animals and tall, thin people who are starving. Big cats have public-school accents. She must never say anything about herself in the dialogue except to speak of her unspeakable suffering. Describe, in detail, naked breasts young, old, conservative, recently raped, big, small or mutilated genitals, or enhanced genitals. Never ask how much they pay their employees. Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, who was published by Kwani? An AK, prominent ribs, naked breasts: use these. Any short Africans who live in the jungle or desert may be portrayed with good humour unless they are in conflict with an elephant or chimpanzee or gorilla, in which case they are pure evil. Africa is the only continent you can love—take advantage of this. Big cats have public-school accents. Indeed, their influence limits not only the chance to be published but also the chance to garner a reputation as so many publishers express interest solely in these two names.

Do not offend them. But do not be too specific. Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, who was published by Kwani?

binyavanga wainaina discovering home

And dead bodies. Or corrupt politicians, inept polygamous travel-guides, and prostitutes you have slept with. Make sure you show that you are able to eat such food without flinching, and describe how you learn to enjoy it—because you care.

Just call her Mama. After he won the Caine Prize, he says, "Everybody was asking me, are you going to write a big African novel that changes African writing and stands for Africa, maybe something about globalization?

Shelves: black-writersafrican-writers Ya'll need to read this essay.

Binyavanga wainaina quotes

The Loyal Servant always behaves like a seven-year-old and needs a firm hand; he is scared of snakes, good with children, and always involving you in his complex domestic dramas. One of the challenges for African writers, says Wainaina, is getting funding. Avoid having the African characters laugh, or struggle to educate their kids, or just make do in mundane circumstances. Whichever angle you take, be sure to leave the strong impression that without your intervention and your important book, Africa is doomed. Always take the side of the elephant. They also have family values: see how lions teach their children? Or he is an Oxford-educated intellectual turned serial-killing politician in a Savile Row suit. Africa is to be pitied, worshipped or dominated. There is always a big sky. When talking about exploitation by foreigners mention the Chinese and Indian traders.

The Modern African is a fat man who steals and works in the visa office, refusing to give work permits to qualified Westerners who really care about Africa.

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