African Literature Today

Founded in 1968 by Heinemann Publishers, London, African Literature Today, is the oldest international journal of African Literature in the world. It began as a twice-annual publication but changed with its fifth issue on “The Novel in Africa” in 1971, to a once-yearly publication. For three decades it was edited by one of the most versatile literary critics of the 20th century, the Sierra Leonean-born Professor Eldred Durosimi Jones. In 2000 when Professor Jones retired as Editor Emeritus, the editorship passed on to Professor Ernest N. Emenyonu whose appointment was held as ‘a very good omen for African Literature’ by Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, and by Africa’s legendary leading novelist, Chinua Achebe as, ‘a most appropriate and logical development, and a very happy event for African Literature.’


As an annual publication, African Literature Today covers single topics and extensive book reviews in each issue. Contributions come from literary scholars and critics all over the world. Topics covered since 2000 are: ALT 24 New Women’s Writing in African Literature (2004), ALT 25 New Directions in African Literature (2006), ALT 26 War in African Literature (2008), ALT 27 New Novels in African Literature (2010), ALT 28 Film in African Literature(2010), ALT 29 Teaching African Literature (2011).


ALT 1—14 were published from London by Heinemann Educational Books and from New York by Africana Publishing Company. ALT 15—25 were published by James Currey Publishers, Oxford and Africa World Press, Trenton, New Jersey. With ALT 26, James Currey Publishers joined Boydell & Brewer Ltd. James Currey /Boydell and Brewer’s North and South American distribution is available through The University of Rochester Press, New York. A Nigerian edition was published by Heinemann Educational Books Nigeria from Vol 24 to Vol 25; from Vol 26 onwards HEBN Publishers have continued with the series. The journal is currently published simultaneously in the United Kingdom, Nigeria and the United States. The Editorial Headquarters of African Literature Today is the University of Michigan-Flint.


Titles by African Literature Today

The following backlist titles are available in the US and Canada from Africa World Press, and in the rest of the world from James Currey, an imprint of Boydell and Brewer. A Nigerian edition, published by HEBN is available from ALT 24 onwards:


ALT 15 Women in African Literature Today

ALT 16 Oral & Written Poetry in African Literature Today

ALT 17 The Question of Language in African Literature Today

ALT 18 Orature in African Literature Today

ALT 19 Critical Theory & African Literature Today

ALT 20 New Trends & Generations in African Literature Today

ALT 21 Childhood in African Literature Today

ALT 22 Exile & African Literature Today

ALT 23 South & Southern African Literature Today

ALT 24 New Women’s Writing in African Literature Today

ALT 25 New Directions in African Literature Today


The following backlist titles are available worldwide from James Currey, an imprint of Boydell and Brewer:


ALT 26 War in African Literature Today

ALT 27 New Novels in African Literature Today

ALT 28 Film in African Literature Today

ALT 29 Teaching African Literature Today

ALT 30 Reflections & Retrospectives in African Literature Today

ALT 31 Writing Africa in the Short Story: African Literature Today

ALT 32 Politics & Social Justice: African Literature Today

ALT 33 Children's Literature & Story-telling

ALT 34 Diaspora & Returns in Fiction

ALT 35: Focus on Egypt

ALT 36: Queer Theory in Film & Fiction

Forthcoming in the series:

ALT 37


Editor: Ernest N. Emenyonu

Ernest N. Emenyonu, Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Letters (FNAL) and Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Education (FNAE), is Professor of Africana Studies, University of Michigan-Flint. A specialist in African Literature, he has taught African Literature at various institutions of higher learning in Nigeria and the United States, and has published extensively in the field. His publications include articles in leading journals of African Literature and chapters in books and anthologies on the criticism of African Literature in Africa, Europe, India and the United States. He has edited several works of criticism on African Literature including  Emerging Perspectives on Nawal El Saadawi (2010), Emerging Perspectives on Chinua Achebe Vols. 1 & 2, (2004), Goat Skin Bags and Wisdom: New Critical Perspectives on African Literature (2000). He is also the author of:  A Good Shepherd: A Biography of the Most Rev. Benjamin C. Nwankiti(2003). His works of fiction include: Tales of Our Motherland (short stories) (1999) and a number of children’s books including Uzo: A Story of African Childhood (2011).

Assistant Editor: Patricia T. Emenyonu

Dr. Patricia T. Emenyonu, formerly Associate Professor of English/English Education, at  Imo State University/ University of Calabar, Nigeria, teaches in the Departments of English and Africana Studies at the University of Michigan-Flint. Her research interests include 'Women as writers in Africa, the Americas and the Caribbean.' A specialist in African Literature, Reading and English Methodology, she has published variously in these fields in leading journals and anthologies in Africa and the United States. She is the author of Reading and the Nigerian Cultural Background. 

Associate Editors:

Bryce, Jane

Jane Bryce is Professor of African Literature and Cinema at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill. Born in Tanzania, she was educated there, the UK, and Nigeria. She has been a freelance journalist and fiction editor and has published in a range of academic journals and essay collections. She is also a creative writer and teacher, curates a film festival and edits Poui: Cave Hill Journal of Creative Writing.

Eke, Maureen 

Maureen N. Eke has a PH.D in Comparative Literature from Indiana University, Bloomington. She is currently a Professor of English at Central Michigan University, where she teaches courses in African Diasporan literatures, postcolonial literatures/theory, as well as women’s writing.  She has also served as the Associate Vice President for Diversity and International Education at Central Michigan University.  She is a Past President of the African Literature Association (ALA) and current editor of the ALA’s Series.  Her publications include four co-edited volumes: Cross-Rhythms; African Images: Recent Studies and Texts in Cinema (2000); Gender and Sexuality in African Literature and Film (2007); and Emerging Perspectives on Nawal El Saadawi (2010); and Literature, the Visual Arts and globalization in Africa and its Diaspora (2011).  She has published numerous articles on African Literature and cinema. Some of her articles have appeared in Research in African Literatures, Callaloo, Visual Anthropology, and South African Theatre Journal.  She serves on the editorial boards of several international publications, including Critical Arts; Journal of African Cinema; and Africa Literature Today.  She is currently co-editing a special volume of Research in African Literatures (RAL) on “Memory/History, Violence, and Reconciliation.”

Newell, Stephanie

Professor Stephanie Newell teaches postcolonial literature at the University of Sussex, UK. She has published widely on African popular literatures and West African literary history, including Ghanaian Popular Fiction (James Currey, 2000) and Literary Culture in Colonial Ghana (Manchester UP, 2002). Her recent books include West African Literatures: Ways of Reading (Oxford UP, 2006), and The Forger’s Tale: The Search for Odeziaku (Ohio UP, 2006). She is currently writing a book on anonymity in colonial West African print cultures, to be published in 2012 by Ohio University Press.

Nnolim, Charles

Charles Nnolim is Professor of English, University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria. His specialty is African literature, especially the novel. He has published extensively on the criticism of African Literature in books, anthologies and leading journals throughout the world. He is a Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Letters (FNAL), Fellow of the International Biographical Association (FIBA) and Fellow of the World Literary Academy (FWLA). In 2006 he was the recepient of Nigeria’s highest award in the field of Letters, the Nigerian National Order of Merit (NNOM).


Nwankwo, Chimalum 

Chimalum Nwankwo is a Professor of Literature in the Department of English at North Carolina A & T State University, Greensboro. An award winning poet (uniquely known as ‘poet of the aerial zone), he has published several collections of poetry including: Feet of the limping Dancers (1987), Toward the Aerial Zone (1988), Voices from the Deep Water (1997), The Womb in the Heart (2002),  The  Womb in the Heart and Other Poems (2010), and Of the Deepest Shadows and the Prisons of Fire (2010). He has also published a critical study, Toward the Kingdom of Woman and Man: The Works of Ngugi wa Thion’go (1992), and a play, The Trumpet Parable (1988). In 1988 and 2002, Professor Nwankwo won the Association of Nigerian Authors Poetry prize, and in the year 2001, he was awarded the senior Fulbright Fellowship for scholarly research and teaching in Nigeria. He spent 2011-2012 academic year on sabbatical at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University in Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria. He is currently Professorof English and World Literatures and Writer-in-Residence, Nigerian Turkish Nile University, Abuja, Nigeria.

Kwando Osel-Nyame, Jr.

Kwadwo Osei-Nyame, Jnr (Dr) has a PhD in English and African Studies from the University of Oxford. He teaches African Literature(s), Language(s), Cultural and Diaspora studies at the Faculty of the Languages and Cultures of Africa at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. His interests include pan – Africanism, modernity and gender in literary and cultural studies. He is interested in using teaching and in particular literature, music and film as a transformative practice in the classroom and in the wider community within the broad context of African historical self-rehabilitation. He is also interested in the relationship between human rights, civil liberties and African development.

Tekpetey, Kwawisi

Kwawisi Tekpetey received his Ph.D. in African Languages and Literature from University of Wisconsin, Madison.  He is currently Professor of International Languages and Literatures, at Central State University, Wilberforce, Ohio, where he served as Director of the Honors Program. He teaches courses in African literature, French, and Swahili. His research interests are mainly in Francophone African Literature and African Verbal Art Forms.  An Associate Editor of International Journal of African Studies, he has published in Research in African Literatures, Obsidian, and African Literature Today as well as in other peer-reviewed journals.

Uko, Iniobong

Iniobong I. Uko, Ph.D is a Professor of English in the Department of English, and the current Director of General Studies, University of Uyo, Uyo, Nigeria. Her area of research is African Literature, specifically women’s writing, and a cross-cultural study of African and Diasporic women’s writings. She is concerned about the diverse issues that confront black women daily in all spheres of life in different cultures. Professor Uko has participated in several women’s activities and initiatives in Nigeria and abroad. She has published extensively in learned journals and books in Nigeria, Ghana, Germany, the United States of America and the United Kingdom. She is the author of the seminal book Gender and Identity in the Works of Osonye Tess Onwueme.


Out-Going Reviews Editor: James Gibbs

In 2007, James Gibbs retired from a career as a teacher that had taken him
to universities in Ghana, Malawi, Nigeria, Belgium and the UK.  Since then
he has continued his university contacts as an external examiner for the
University of Ghana, and pursued his interests in African literature and
drama. He edited  African Theatre: Companies (2010) and the Festivals issue
of the same series  (forthcoming). His collection of essays on the Ghanaian
theatre, Nkyin-Kyin, appeared in 2009 and his account of the first
production of Kobina Sekyi's The Blinkards was included in African Theatre:
Histories (2010). His most recent reviews have appeared in the LUCAS
Bulletin, and an essay on  "Soyinka's You Must Set Forth" is included in
Engaging with Literature of Commitment (Rodopi, 2012).  A conference on
Harold Pinter at Goldsmiths, University of London, during November 2011
provided him with an opportunity to stage a rehearsed reading of his
verbatim theatre piece about  Pinter's first play (The Room).


In-Coming Reviews Editor: Obi Nwakanma

Obi Nwakanma was born in Nigeria where he worked as a journalist after earning a BA (English) from the University of Jos. He has been Literary Editor of the Vanguard, one of Nigeria’s major national newspapers and continues to write the weekly “Orbit” column for the Sunday Vanguard. He has also corresponded internationally for Newsweek and the Neue Zurcher Zeitung of Zurich. Nwakanma received the MFA from Washington University in St. Louis and the PhD from Saint Louis University where he received the Walter Ong Prize for distinguished accomplishment. Obi Nwakanma was awarded Nigeria’s prestigious Poetry Prize, the ANA/CADBURY prize for his collection of poems, Roped Urn in 1996. His poems Horsemen & Other Poems (2007) was published by the Africa World Press, New Jersey, while Thirsting For Sunlight (2010) his biography of the poet Christopher Okigbo, Africa’s modernist poet of the 20th century was published by James Currey. Birthcry, his newest book of poems was shortlisted for the Nigerian LNG prize in 2013. Obi Nwakanma has been Assistant Professor of English at Truman State University, Missouri where he taught Creative Writing and 20th century Transnational Literatures. He is currently on the English faculty at the University of Central Florida, Orlando where he teaches Creative Writing, African/African-American Literatures and Literatures of the Black Diaspora.

Web Designer: Ismaeel Dhul-Qarnayn

Ismaeel Dhul-Qarnayn has an extensive educational background in cultural studies as well as involvement in cultural awareness programs in both national and international concentrations. While an undergrad at the University of Michigan-Flint, for the Africana Studies Department, he served as Peer Facilitator in the Africana-Studies Department and served as the Director of public relations and president of the Africana Performance Troupe, in which he helped organized multiple culture competence, awareness, and humanitarian events through the department like Human Rights Day and the Art for Haiti (event organized after the Haiti earthquake). Also as an undergrad, his language skills allowed him to serve as the main Arabic language tutor for students at the University of Michigan-Flint, which extended to Mott College as well, in which he continues to server as a private tutor for many different ethnic families thorough out the community. He has traveled internationally to participate in panel discussions for tolerance like in Sri Lanka and have conducted numerous researches on tolerance for multiple publications.

He is currently a Master’s candidate for Near Eastern Languages from the Department of Classical and Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at Wayne State University in which his research involved extensive work in cultural and religious pluralism and classic Arabic poetry. 




Guidelines for Submission of Articles

The Editor invites submission of articles on the announced themes of forthcoming issues. Submissions will be acknowledged promptly and decisions communicated within six months of the receipt of the paper. Your name and institutional affiliation (with full mailing address and email) should appear on a separate sheet, plus a brief biographical profile of not more than six lines. The editor cannot undertake to return materials submitted, and contributors are advised to keep a copy of each material sent. Please note that all articles outside the announced themes cannot be considered or acknowledged. Articles should be submitted in the English Language.


Length: Articles should not exceed 5,000 words.


Format: Articles should be double-spaced, and should use the same type face and size all through. Italics are preferred to underlines for titles of books. Articles are reviewed blindly, so do not insert your name, institutional affiliation and contact information on the article itself. Instead, provide such information on a separate page.


Style: UK or US spellings are required, but be consistent. Direct quotations should retain the spellings used in the original source. Check the accuracy of citations and always give the author’s surname and page number in the text, and a full reference in the Works Cited list at the end of the article. Italicize titles of books or plays. Use single inverted commas throughout except for quotes within quotes which are double. Avoid subtitles or subsection headings within the text.


Citations: Limit your sources to the most recent, or the most important books and journals, in English. Cite works in foreign languages only when no English-language books are available. Cite websites only if they are relatively permanent and if they add important information unavailable elsewhere.


Citations should be based on the latest MLA style sheet. For in-text citations, the sequence in parentheses should be (Surname: page number). No year of publication should be reflected within the text. All details should be presented in the Works Cited list at the end of the article. Consistency is advised. Examples:


Cazenave, Odile. Rebellious Women: The New Generation of Female African Novelists. London: Lynne Reinner Publishers, 2000.


Duerden, Dennis. ‘The “Discovery” of the African Mask.’ Research in African Literatures. Vol. 31, No. 4 (Winter 2000): 29-47.


Ukala, Sam. ‘Tradition, Rotimi, and His Audience.’ Goatskin Bags and Wisdom: New Critical Perspectives on African Literature. Ed. Ernest N. Emenyonu. New Jersey: Africa World Press, 2000: 91-104.


Ensure that your works cited list is alphabetized on a word-by-word basis, whether citations begin with the author’s name or with an anonymous work’s title.

Please, avoid footnotes or endnotes.


Do not quote directly from the Internet without properly citing the source as you would when quoting from a book.


Use substantive sources for obtaining your information. Depend less on general reference books such as Encyclopedias, World Books, etc.


Copyright: It is the responsibility of contributors to clear permissions.


All articles should be sent to the Editor:


Ernest N. Emenyonu, African Literary Today

Department of Africana Studies

University of Michigan-Flint

303 East Kearsley Street

Flint MI 48502



Fax: 001-810-766-6719


Reviewers should provide full bibliographic details, including the extent, ISBN and price, and submit to the Reviews Editor:

James Gibbs, 8 Victoria Square, Bristol BS8 4ET, UK


Note from the publisher on new and forthcoming titles

James Currey Publishers have now joined Boydell & Brewer Ltd.

African Literature Today will continue to be published as an annual volume

under the James Currey imprint. North and South American distribution will be

available from The University of Rochester Press, 68 Mount Hope Avenue,

Rochester, NY 14620-2731, USA, while UK and International distribution will be

handled by Boydell & Brewer Ltd., PO Box 9, Woodbridge IP12 3DF, UK.

In the days before his death, Hendrix had been in poor health, due in part to fatigue caused by overworking, a chronic lack of sleep, and an illness assumed to be influenza-related. Insecurities about his personal relationships and disillusionment with the music industry had also contributed to his frustration. Although the details of his final hours and death are disputed, Hendrix spent much of his last day with Monika Dannemann. During the morning of September 18, she found him unresponsive in her apartment at the Samarkand Hotel, 22 Lansdowne Crescent, Notting Hill. She called for an ambulance at 11:18 a.m. and he was taken to St Mary Abbot's Hospital where an attempt was made to resuscitate him. He was pronounced dead at 12:45 p.m.


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