Photograph © Internaz
Binyavanga Wainaina talks to Ellah Allfrey about meeting the expectations of an African readership and what to do with a bad review.
Photograph © Internaz
‘She must have loved gold seeing that everything in the penthouse was gold. We didn’t sit. Fear didn’t let us see where to sit.’ A story by Adachioma Ezeano.
‘I had also, a week earlier, been fired for trying to sleep with my boss’s husband. I got the idea from a book, or maybe every book.’ A story by Emily Adrian.
‘The Mitsubishi conglomerate controls a forty per cent share of the world market in bluefin tuna; they are freezing and hoarding huge stocks of the fish every year.’ Katherine Rundell on extinction speculation.
‘Two roof tiles are missing to the rear: the kiss of death. Without repair, ruination is now inevitable. Until then, this is my best hope of shelter.’ Cal Flyn visits the island of Swona in northern Scotland.
‘I’m on the cliff of myself & these aren’t wings, they’re futures. / For as long as I can remember my body was a small town nightmare.’ A poem by Ocean Vuong.
Binyavanga Wainaina was the founding editor of Kwani?, a leading African literary magazine. He won the 2002 Caine Prize for African writing, and has written for Vanity Fair, Granta and the New York Times. He passed away in 2019 in Nairobi at the age of 48.More about the author →
‘My first name, Binyavanga, has always been a sort of barometer of public mood.’
‘Always end your book with Nelson Mandela saying something about rainbows or renaissances. Because you care.’
After a sudden stroke, Binyavanga Wainaina and his lover travel to Nairobi to reconcile with his father.
‘We are, it seems, in the middle of nowhere.’
‘Everyone says you were beautiful when you were young.’
Kate Zambreno on Marguerite Duras.
‘To my eyes, airplane always looked impertinently casual on the page; it robbed the amazing machine of its proper mystery.’
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