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Some of the world’s biggest literary awards, including the Nobel, Booker and Goncourt, have gone to Africans this year in a sign of the continent’s emergence as a major force in publishing and a region with a direct line to the pressing questions of our time.

“We are witnessing a reawakening of interest in Africa among the European literary world,” said Xavier Garnier, who teaches African literature at the Sorbonne in Paris.

He described the string of awards for Africans as “striking”.

They include Tanzania’s Abdulrazak Gurnah becoming a Nobel laureate, South Africa’s Damon Galgut winning Britain’s Booker Prize and 31-year-old Senegalese Mohamed Mbougar Sarr becoming the first writer from sub-Saharan Africa to win France’s top literary award, the Prix Goncourt.

Zanzibar-born Abdulrazak Gurnah, who came to Britain as a refugee, won the Nobel in October for his long career dissecting colonialism and immigration Tolga Akmen AFP

That’s not all: Senegalese writers won this year’s International Booker (David Diop) and Prix Neustadt (Boubacar Boris Diop) while Portugal’s Prix Camoes went to… Read more

 

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