Imagining an African Feminist Press
When I was at high school, I was fortunate enough to have an art teacher that, unbeknownst to us, taught widely outside the ascribed curriculum, and so I learned of various African and Indian art periods in the same breath that I learnt of Western art ones, including of many BlackThis research utilizes official South African racial categories as established in apartheid and their continued usage post-apartheid: ‘White’ (persons of white European descent), ‘Black’ (local indigenous Black Africans), ‘Coloured’ (persons of mixed race and descendants of Malaya/Indian/Mozambican slaves and prisoners), ‘Indian’ (persons of South Asian descent that arrived as slaves in Cape Town in the seventeenth century and in the second half of the nineteenth century; first as British indentured labourers and then as merchants). Where the terms ‘black’ (lower case ‘b’) or ‘people-of-colour’ are used, they are used in preference of ‘non-white’ and include Black, Coloured and Indian South Africans also grouped under the term ‘previously disadvantaged’, which in the later half of the nineties also constitutionally includes Chinese South Africans. These terms are also used to denote identification with blackness as a political self-affirmative project and stance. South African visual artists during those apartheid years. By the time I went to university (the same one as my teacher), apartheid had ended, and this kind of curriculum continued, so I took this for granted yet again. What bothered me, being surrounded by Indian, Black and Coloured students and staff, when encountering South African art books, was that they showed predominantly White artists, with one or two Black men artists. There were hardly ever Coloured artists, almost never women-of-colour artists and certainly no Indian artists. So where did all the people around me who studied year after year disappear to and why?
Encountering Edward Said’s text Orientalism in my second year was eye-opening in understanding how narrative was projected, built up and sustained by half-truths, stereotypical discourse and fantasies of the Other in order to, relatedly, establish ideas of oneself. It, also, shows how bodies — of people and discourses — had to simultaneously be erased from one’s consciousness and suppressed within popular and historical knowledge to make one an authority on Others. On a daily basis I witnessed bodies and histories being erased from South African visual arts discourse with the lie that they didn’t exist — that we didn’t exist — and I realised, even as a young student, the power of the written word in representational life and death.
Since then, it has been a significant part of my career to generate discourse — both the spoken and the written word — around visual arts by South African artists-of-colour, and in particular, women-of-colour.
When writing a text on a visual artist, I always interview them in order to script their thoughts, in addition to my analyses. The advent of Youtube and blogs has made it possible to present these video and audio interviews as a database of these conversations that other scholars can access. This is important in South Africa (SA), where despite the fact that many young artists-of-colour are now participating in the visual arts scene, private galleries – which are the mainstay of our industry – are still overwhelmingly White, while the SA public museum field remains woefully underfunded and inaccessible. This has an impact on discourse, in that while artists-of-colour may be top earners for their galleries, there is little money spent on their careers in terms of producing publications for artists and investing in talks. It is hard not to see artists, in this sense, as little more than cash cows if there is not an historical investment in their work.
We have borne witness to this legacy before. In the 1960s, Gladys Mgudlandlu, one of the first black women visual artists, was said to draw up to two thousand audience members to her openings. Nontobeko Ntombela, A Fragile Archive: Refiguring | Rethinking Reimagining | Re-presenting Gladys Mgudlandlu (Masters of Art History thesis, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 2012). In 1979, when she died, she died in poverty. Her name all but disappeared from art history narratives until the 2000s, when several exhibitions and books recuperated her legacy. I would like to say she is firmly deposited into SA art history, but that depends on which art books you read and teacher you have.
Print matter comes to mean that print matters in art livelihoods.
Part of the reason that publishing has not been easy is that the off-set publication process is prohibitively expensive in South Africa. Even if one excludes the design and layout, copy-editing and image-correction processes, the actual cost of just a print run of one thousand books of a 100-page full-colour book easily sets you back R100 000,00 (€5,100). One has to be rather rich, subsidised by a gallery, private patronage or via a funding body in order to afford this. More recently, print-on-demand has made small scale printing options possible, and the greater access to programmes like Photoshop and InDesign, as well as online options like producing e-pubs, PDFs and blogs have allowed artists more possibilities. This does not, however, mean that publishing is easy. The publishing process – that of editing, copy-editing, design and layout, illustration, image-correction, copyright – is mired in opaqueness for most individuals who might not know where to start. The distribution of publications (something as basic as transport), accessing press and networks, as well as generating publicity and discourse are further conundrums that are exacerbated in the southern African context between large metropolises and smaller towns, the rural and urban, Anglo-, Franco- and Lusophone divides (not to mention often not catering for indigenous languages), especially if one is not backed by any official publication house. The racial and gendered impact this has on discourses is enormous.
It has been harder for persons-of-colour and, particularly, women-of-colour to find publishing avenues. I want to qualify this even further: it is hard for women-of-colour to find publishing opportunities without compromising their scholarship both in terms of their ideas and form. In his article ‘Doing Ventriloquism’, Khwezi Gule, ‘Doing Ventriloquism’, in Sharlene Khan, ed., Aluta Continua: Doing it for Daddy… Ten Years On (Johannesburg: Pole Pole Press, 2020) pp. 34-39. curator Khwezi Gule talks about the consistent problem with arts writing and publishing, discussing the invisible hand of White arts editors. He outlines how his texts have been cut, language and even headlines changed, many times unnecessarily. The result leaves him feeling compromised as an intellectual who understands the weightiness of language in a ‘genderized, sexualized, wholly racialized world’. Toni Morrison, Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination (UK: Picador, (1992/93), p.4.
In a similar manner, as a young writer, I, too, had struggled with the same issues, having the titles of my texts altered; my language, phrasings, tone constantly changed. When people have subsequently questioned my choices, you cannot say, ‘But it was the editor who did this’. Moreover, I am left wondering: if my language choices are not incorrect, then why was the alteration necessary?
My idiosyncratic manner of speech may be intentional or intuitive and yet, too often, my repetitiveness, which denotes emphasis or poetry, is removed; my creative musings are turned into didactic no-nonsense writing because that is what is expected from some ‘radical black feminist’; my didactic speech acts are toned down so as not to offend.
When I am involved as an editor in the editorial process, I follow this rule: if it isn’t wrong, I don’t alter the authorial voice. Because of the way someone writes, grafts their speech patterns, I want to hear their unique voice in my head, not the brevity of the editorial hand. There have been times, as Gule shows in his text, when the editorial hand has been much more sinister so as to change a textual reference without consultation, so as to use a black voice/ face to wage war against someone else.
As I have grown older and have gained more authority, I have made the decision to withdraw several texts from publication rather than accommodate the unreasonable requests by anonymous reviewers or supposedly-powerful editors who think you need to publish so badly you will accede to changes ‘or else’. Age, and associate professor title, as well as a black-African feminist stance have given me a clear vision of what I will tolerate and what I won’t anymore.
There are many who do not have, as yet, the privilege of the first two of these, even if they have the last. There are a few academic journals that cater to the elasticity of black-African feminist creativity, scholarship and creative theorisation such as Agenda: Empowering Women for Gender Equity, Journal of African Cultural Studies and Journal of Eastern African Literary and Cultural Studies. However, if the tussles are still severe even in academic and arts discourse, where one would expect more liberal freedoms and mindsets, what can be expected of the wider public market?
For far too long in SA, one heard the refrain that black people don’t buy books, and so there was supposedly a limited market for what could be put out — genres like biographies are always acceptable; certain kinds of ‘African literature novels’ are too; short stories (which have a long important history in SA) are not thought to be commercially viable; science fiction, fantasy and experimental literature that pushes SA writing were, for a long time, harder to come by. There have been in SA, and Africa generally, a number of markers in recent years that show that one should rightfully be suspect of these stereotypes around a ‘black market’ and ‘black readership’. The yearly Abantu Festival, which is a book festival that is held solely for an all-Black audience in Soweto, draws crowds from around the country — the funding model of the festival is also worth mentioning in that it consistently encourages people to donate money towards it all year long. The Ake Arts and Book Festival, Keleketla’s Lephephe Print Gatherings and Khanye College’s Jozi Book Fair are all attended by predominantly black audiences.
Besides the major publication houses across west, east and southern Africa, small publishers continue to live and die and make an important contribution to the literary landscape locally and globally regardless of how long they survive (e.g., Farafina, Kwani, Narrative Landscape Press, Chimurenga, words, etc., Keleketla Media Arts Project, Timbila, Botsotso, Deep South, and Tea Room are just some). What I am concerned about though is how many of these are attending to an African population that is increasingly woke, deeply creative and feminist.
There are some notable feminist publishing initiatives that need mentioning in the SADC landscape. Bibi Bakare-Yusef from Nigeria established Cassava Republic Press in 2006 to ensure local affordable production of the amazing literary talent that is on offer. She has also established Ankara Press, which seeks to realise feminist realities within the romance genre as well. The NGO FEMRITE in Uganda has been instrumental as a space since its inception in 1995 in workshopping, developing and publishing Ugandan women writers. Likewise, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus Trust Creative Writing Workshop has completed its eleventh edition in providing a space for workshopping young African writers.
The late Bisi Silva — founder of the space CCA, Lagos, curator and writer — was also instrumental in creating arenas for African artists, curators and scholars to come together, and her work included contributing to the artistic publishing landscape. Her death in 2019 feels like an immeasurable loss. In her role as editor in various engagements and positions, Ellah Wakatama Allfrey has been unrelenting in seeing African women’s voices and publishing emerge in all their complexities. Colleen Higgs’s Modjaji Books is a southern African feminist press making an invaluable contribution to publishing work by women-of-colour writers, even if they may not seem to be commercial successes. For instance, the book by Nedine Moonsamy, The Unfamous Five (2019), set in an Indian township in Johannesburg, may appeal to a limited audience but will no doubt become part of South African literary discourse.
Modjaji Books’ mission statement is to ‘publish short stories, novels, memoir, biography, poetry, essays, narrative non-fiction, reference books and relevant non-fiction’,See also. but the latter part of this has not been fully realized as yet. Likewise, Rose Francis’s African Perspectives Publishing also prints a range of genres from fiction to non-fiction, although the full potential of this scope is not seen, perhaps due to limitations with funding. Imphepo Press — new-comers to the publishing scene — is the intersectional feminist initiative of Vangile Gantsho, Sarah Godsell and Tanya Pretorius and has, thus far, focused on poetry.
These initiatives are not focused solely on women —rather, they attempt to centralise black and African perspectives to try to ensure that literature evidences the fullness of Africans relationalities and lived experiences, that it does not replicate harmful gendered relationships and practices — and in doing so, enact a vision Toni Morrison speaks of for the press (she may be talking about the journalistic press here, but her words apply to a publishing press too):
I suspect that a nonracist, non-sexist, educating press is as profitable as one that is not. I suspect that clarification of difficult issues is just as entertaining as obscuring and reducing them is. But it will take more than an effort of the will to make such a press profitable; it will take imagination, invention, and a strong sense of responsibility and accountability.Toni Morrison, ‘A Race in MInd: The Press in Deed’ (1994), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 33-40.
Pumla Gqola’s book Rape: A South African Nightmare has shown exactly this.Pumla Dineo Gqola, Rape: A South African Nightmare (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2015). It was published in 2016 to resounding success, dominating the Exclusive Books bestseller list and going into several reprints since. Not only is this significant for a black-African feminist book, it demonstrates an audience wanting to read a book that is a theoretical grappling with a social phenomenon, as well as the buying power of a feminist audience. Gqola’s other books have also done well.
Similarly, Koleka Putuma’s stunning book of poetry Collective Amnesia (2017) has seen several reprints and international translations as well.Koleka Putuma, Collective Amnesia (Cape Town, Uhlanga, 2017). Both books defy expectations for their ‘genre’. This, of course, depends on who you are and where you are located. Are you someone who does not think about why there are so few women-of-colour represented in the media or on TV or in the books you read? Is this natural for you when women-of-colour make up more than half of the world’s population?
I am in that majority. I am a South African Indian woman, wonderfully sculpted out of a mix of Eastern and African roots. For me, I have come to take it for granted that black and African women’s voices exist and always have.
Whereas too often visuality has reduced black-African women to images to be consumed and ventriloquised at will, African music, poetry and literature have forced African women’s voices to be heard. A large part of this reckoning has been to the interiority of black women’s thoughts and lives. Whether we heard Nawal El Saadawi’s thoughts as a daughter of Isis;Nawal El Saadawi, A Daughter of Isis: The Early Life of Nawal El Saadawi (London: Zed Books, 1999). Ama Ata Aidoo as she incisively cut through and apart colonialism as the ultimate sister killjoy;Ama Ata Aidoo, Our Sister Killjoy or Reflections of a Black-Eyed Squint (Essex: Pearson, 1977). Mariama Bâ’s So-long A Letter as she conveyed a husband’s betrayal and her long-suffering to her close friend; Mariama Bâ, So Long a Letter (Oxford: Heinemann, 1980/89). Yvonne Vera as a beautiful butterfly burning brightly when her dreams were extinguished;Yvonne Vera, Butterfly Burning (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000). Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie as she cried for the loss of a sister that would never be found; Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Half of a Yellow Sun (Hammersmith: Harper Perennial, 2006/07). Tsitsi Dangarembga when she was not sorry when her brother died;Tsitsi Dangarembga, Nervous Conditions (Oxfordshire: Ayebia Clarke Publishing, 1998). re-evaluated the ebb and flow of water that has been used to drown, sustain and contain with Putuma;Putuma, Collective Amnesia, pp. 96-100. or listened to the hundreds of silences, gaps and elusiveness surrounding Dulcie, Sarah, Eva and nameless other women whom Zoë WicombZoë Wicomb, David’s Story (Cape Town: Kwela Books, 2000). and Gabeba BaderoonGabeba Baderoon, A Hundred Silences (Cape Town: Kwela Books/Snailpress, 2006). and Yvette AbrahamsYvette Abrahams, ‘Ambiguity is my middle name: A research diary’, in Nomboniso Gasa, ed., Women in South African History: Basus’iimbokodo, Bawel’imilambo/They Remove Boulders and Cross Rivers (Cape Town: HSRC Press, 2007), pp.421-52. and GqolaPumla Dineo Gqola, A Renegade Called Simphiwe (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2013); Pumla Dineo Gqola, Reflection Rogue: Inside the Mind of a Feminist (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2017). have called forth — we have come to think of it as natural to have access to the interior lives of black and African characters, think through the thoughts and feelings of the characters scripted for us, to go on the affective journeys their authors take us on, to cry and be angry with them and mourn for them. As Aidoo says, people ask her, why did she kill her titular character Anowar, and she replies, “I didn’t kill her, she committed suicide.”Africa in Words, ‘Ama Ata Aidoo in Conversation: Review, Africa Writes’, August 15, 2014,.
However, not so very long ago, German philosopher Immanuel Kant in ‘Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime’ had this to say of Africans:
Indeed, Father Labat reports that a Negro carpenter, whom he reproached for haughty treatment of his wives, replied: You whites are real fools, for first you concede so much to your wives, and then you complain when they drive you crazy. There might be something here worth considering, except for the fact that this scoundrel was completely black from head to foot, a distinct proof that what he said was stupid. Patrick Frierson and Paul Guyer, eds., Immanuel Kant: Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime and Other Writings (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), p. 61.
Thus, not only did Africans lack aesthetics and value judgements according to Kant’s treatise, they lacked sensibility and intelligence judging just by their exteriority, and the only thing more stupid and less human than a black man was a black woman (unworthy of Kant’s consideration).
We — people-of-colour — have always been assured of our humanity, of course. It has always been there in our cultural heritage: oral stories, music, visual arts, tapestries, body arts, performances and architecture. But in an age of human evolution in which the written word is given pre-eminence over all else, this needed scripting, and not in our own languages but in those of our oppressors, who have won the war of cultural hegemony. It has taken much dedicated work from women-of-colour to ink their interior lives, and even longer for others to validate it.
The only black and African-American woman to win the Nobel Prize in Literature, Toni Morrison, speaks of her attention to the interiority of her black characters and how she uses imagination and ‘rememory’ to fill in the gaps of that which was deliberately not recorded in American slave history:
The exercise is critical for any person who is black, or who belongs to any marginalized category, for historically, we were seldom invited to participate in the discourse even when we were its topic…. But memories and recollections won’t give me total access to the unwritten interior life of these people. Only the act of the imagination can help me.Toni Morrison, ‘The Site of Memory’ (1987), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 233-38.
Reading feminists Morrison’s and bell hooks’ works, as well as the many works named above, I have not only been faced with their narratives but with my own. I think of myself, my life, my motives, my world. In doing so, I am scripted. Thus, in the reading of Morrison, one is faced with one’s own interiority. In discussing their own work, processes and methods, Morrison, hooks, Saadawi, Dangarembga and Gqola show us how a regard for one’s self is a source of self-regard, and to regard Self is a radical act. In 2022 we cannot take this central subjective positioning for granted as Africans, as black people, as people-of-colour, not when we have world leaders who are willing to call us shithole countries,United States President Donald Trump referred in January 2018 to African nations, Haiti and El Salvador as ‘shitholes’. Patrick Wintour, Jason Burke and Anna Livsey, ‘There’s no other word but racist’: Trump’s global rebuke for ‘shithole’ remark. Guardian, January 13, 2018, to allow us to drown in sight of land, who are willing to continue the genocide against black bodies that were once forced onto white soil and still remain unhomed.
The word ‘press’ can mean different things: to apply pressure on; the printing press; the journalistic media; etc. The slippage between these three meanings is interesting in the time of fake news and Twitter battles and the so-called demise of reading spans. The sliding signifiers between these three ideas of ‘press’ is exactly what I imagine when I envision an African Feminist Press. For years I have thought of starting up a press and have tried unsuccessfully to raise funds for the printing equipment (this is the Japanese Riso photocopier used by many schools around South Africa, which prints cheaply and is used effectively by the Keleketla Media Project in their zine initiatives). What would be the job of an African Feminist Press? Although Morrison is referring to the study of literature, I draw inspiration from her here, of what a press should evidence:
1. literature’s character-building, moral-strengthening capacities,
2. its suitability for high-minded, politics-free leisure activity,
3. its role in “cultivating powers of imagination that are essential to citizenship”; … last and only route to the remembrance; … may also be the mechanism of repair in the disconnect between public and private; … can be an alternative language that can contradict and elude or analyse the regime, the authority of the electronically visual, the seduction of the “virtual”; … make it possible to experience the public without coercion and without submission. Literature refuses and disrupts passive or controlled consumption of the spectacle designed to nationalize identity in order to sell us products. Literature allows us — no, demands of us — the experience of ourselves as multidimensional persons. As a simultaneous apprehension of human character in time, in context, in space, in metaphorical and expressive language, it organizes the disorientating influence of an excess of realities: heightened, virtual, mega, hyper, cyber, contingent, porous, and nostalgic. Finally, it can project an alleviated future.Toni Morrison, ‘Literature and Public Life’ (1998), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 99-100.
An African Feminist Press should not be siloed in a genre, medium or type of output. The reason for this is that a Gqola that writes a black feminist theory book is also one that writes about music, prose and analyses creative texts; a Dangarembga who writes groundbreaking novels is also a filmmaker and scholar theorising on her own work; a Saadawi who is a medical doctor writes novels, biographies, short stories and feminist analyses; a Sharlene Khan who writes against whiteness and is invested in black-African feminist theorisation, is also a visual artist and thinks through visuality in publication; a Natasha Becker should be allowed to produce a book that replicates her curatorial brilliance.
We silo and compartmentalise black and African women who are, and have always been, too fluid for categories, written word and the pen.
An African Feminist Press should encourage black-African women to write in the affective, expressive manners that mark their intellect and from which their empathy flows. It should allow any form of presentation because, by their very existence, black-African women defy boundaries. An African Feminist Press should be defined by Molara Ogundipe’s idea that African women ‘theorise from the epicentres of [their] agency, looking for what is meaningful, progressive and useful to us as Africans’. Desiree Lewis, ‘Desiree Lewis talks to Molara Ogundipe, leading feminist theorist, poet, literary critic, educator and activist, about the interfaces of politics, culture and education’. Feminist Africa, no. 1 (2002), p. 6. An African Feminist Press should graft space for textured narrations of these agentic lives. Dangarembga’s Nervous Conditions (1988), which set a new precedent for feminist scriptings of the African girl-child, was rejected by numerous African publishers as too negative until it was published by the Women’s Press in London.
This kind of determination to see a work through to publication against all odds is a tale all too familiar to black-African women. An African Feminist Press — dedicated to the lives and works of black-African women — would not see the works of such women languishing at the bottom of drawers but would look to publish it at all costs, because they understand the value of such works not just in the today, but for tomorrow. It should not just be left to the individual grit of feminists — scholars, writers, publishers — to sustain these either. Why is there not a national, cross-national, continental imperative with significant funding (from governmental, pan-African, NGO) towards this, when women are shown to be a market force of note for absolutely everything and, more importantly, when our world is marked by the worst genocide in history against the bodies of women? Why do you only care for the saving of the African woman’s body and not of her mind?
As I pen down this vision, I have received an email from the SA National Arts Council rejecting a proposal for the purchase of a Riso machine to print a series of artist books on SA women-of-colour visual artists to be distributed freely to schools:
This is another project that intends to create a dialogue to critically engage profiled South African women-of-colour creatives on their creative methods, visual strategies and vocabularies. As important as these creative exchanges are, some of these conversations are not needed. There is already much information available on many of these artists. South African National Arts Council email correspondence, August 20, 2020.
I am shocked by the wording of the email because as a scholar in this field I do not know of this other singular project that addresses the needs of women-of-colour artists or creative theorisation or the audacity to say that there is much information on the artists put forth, which I found nothing short of heart-breaking. However, I write down this vision because I know words are never wasted, and if it conjures up an imagination of possibilities in someone else, that this can be done, that this should be done, even in some other time, and that is only then a matter of birthing.
This article was previously published in the book DECOLONIZING ART BOOK FAIRS Publishing Practices from the South(s) (Workbook, Berlin, co-published by Afrikadaa, Mosaïques and MISS READ, 2021) edited by Yaiza Camps, Moritz Grünke, Pascale Obolo, Michalis Pichler & Parfait Tabapsi. Re-publication in herri with kind permission of the Author and Publishers.
|1.||↑||This research utilizes official South African racial categories as established in apartheid and their continued usage post-apartheid: ‘White’ (persons of white European descent), ‘Black’ (local indigenous Black Africans), ‘Coloured’ (persons of mixed race and descendants of Malaya/Indian/Mozambican slaves and prisoners), ‘Indian’ (persons of South Asian descent that arrived as slaves in Cape Town in the seventeenth century and in the second half of the nineteenth century; first as British indentured labourers and then as merchants). Where the terms ‘black’ (lower case ‘b’) or ‘people-of-colour’ are used, they are used in preference of ‘non-white’ and include Black, Coloured and Indian South Africans also grouped under the term ‘previously disadvantaged’, which in the later half of the nineties also constitutionally includes Chinese South Africans. These terms are also used to denote identification with blackness as a political self-affirmative project and stance.|
|2.||↑||Nontobeko Ntombela, A Fragile Archive: Refiguring | Rethinking Reimagining | Re-presenting Gladys Mgudlandlu (Masters of Art History thesis, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 2012).|
|3.||↑||Khwezi Gule, ‘Doing Ventriloquism’, in Sharlene Khan, ed., Aluta Continua: Doing it for Daddy… Ten Years On (Johannesburg: Pole Pole Press, 2020) pp. 34-39.|
|4.||↑||Toni Morrison, Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination (UK: Picador, (1992/93), p.4.|
|6.||↑||Toni Morrison, ‘A Race in MInd: The Press in Deed’ (1994), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 33-40.|
|7.||↑||Pumla Dineo Gqola, Rape: A South African Nightmare (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2015).|
|8.||↑||Koleka Putuma, Collective Amnesia (Cape Town, Uhlanga, 2017).|
|9.||↑||Nawal El Saadawi, A Daughter of Isis: The Early Life of Nawal El Saadawi (London: Zed Books, 1999).|
|10.||↑||Ama Ata Aidoo, Our Sister Killjoy or Reflections of a Black-Eyed Squint (Essex: Pearson, 1977).|
|11.||↑||Mariama Bâ, So Long a Letter (Oxford: Heinemann, 1980/89).|
|12.||↑||Yvonne Vera, Butterfly Burning (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000).|
|13.||↑||Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Half of a Yellow Sun (Hammersmith: Harper Perennial, 2006/07).|
|14.||↑||Tsitsi Dangarembga, Nervous Conditions (Oxfordshire: Ayebia Clarke Publishing, 1998).|
|15.||↑||Putuma, Collective Amnesia, pp. 96-100.|
|16.||↑||Zoë Wicomb, David’s Story (Cape Town: Kwela Books, 2000).|
|17.||↑||Gabeba Baderoon, A Hundred Silences (Cape Town: Kwela Books/Snailpress, 2006).|
|18.||↑||Yvette Abrahams, ‘Ambiguity is my middle name: A research diary’, in Nomboniso Gasa, ed., Women in South African History: Basus’iimbokodo, Bawel’imilambo/They Remove Boulders and Cross Rivers (Cape Town: HSRC Press, 2007), pp.421-52.|
|19.||↑||Pumla Dineo Gqola, A Renegade Called Simphiwe (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2013); Pumla Dineo Gqola, Reflection Rogue: Inside the Mind of a Feminist (Johannesburg: MFBooks, 2017).|
|20.||↑||Africa in Words, ‘Ama Ata Aidoo in Conversation: Review, Africa Writes’, August 15, 2014,.|
|21.||↑||Patrick Frierson and Paul Guyer, eds., Immanuel Kant: Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime and Other Writings (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), p. 61.|
|22.||↑||Toni Morrison, ‘The Site of Memory’ (1987), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 233-38.|
|23.||↑||United States President Donald Trump referred in January 2018 to African nations, Haiti and El Salvador as ‘shitholes’. Patrick Wintour, Jason Burke and Anna Livsey, ‘There’s no other word but racist’: Trump’s global rebuke for ‘shithole’ remark. Guardian, January 13, 2018,|
|24.||↑||Toni Morrison, ‘Literature and Public Life’ (1998), in Mouth Full of Blood: Essays, Speeches, Meditations (London: Vintage, 2020), pp. 99-100.|
|25.||↑||Desiree Lewis, ‘Desiree Lewis talks to Molara Ogundipe, leading feminist theorist, poet, literary critic, educator and activist, about the interfaces of politics, culture and education’. Feminist Africa, no. 1 (2002), p. 6.|
|26.||↑||South African National Arts Council email correspondence, August 20, 2020.|