Wainaina how to write about africa

And especially rotting naked dead bodies. Her children are all delinquent. It is always big and red.

Binyavanga Wainaina

He is an enemy of development, always using his government job to make it difficult for pragmatic and good-hearted expats to set up NGOs or Legal Conservation Areas. Finally I wrote something about Bob Geldof. How bad, how very bad. A few posts down my Instagram feed I went on a long rant about African literature focusing on the same generalizing themes.

And sunsets, the African sunset is a must. Tell it like it is. A theme that runs through the short story is the apparent distinction between real black Africans and non-black Africans. Describe, in detail, naked breasts young, old, conservative, recently raped, big, small or mutilated genitals, or enhanced genitals.

I started getting invitations — to conferences, meetings, think tanks. Among your characters you must always include The Starving African, who wanders the refugee camp nearly naked, and waits for the benevolence of the West.

Once in a while I do, and it feels both good and bad, like too much wasabi.

Your African characters may include naked warriors, loyal servants, diviners and seers, ancient wise men living in hermitic splendour. 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.

We make deals with those who see a common and vibrant future being a platform for engagement. Do not offend them.

Describe, in detail, naked breasts young, old, conservative, recently raped, big, small or mutilated genitals, or enhanced genitals. She can have no past, no history; such diversions ruin the dramatic moment.

Do not offend them. Always end your book with Nelson Mandela saying something about rainbows or renaissances.

Binyavanga Wainaina: Talking About Writing About Africa

Or it is hot and steamy with very short people who eat primates. The Ancient Wise Man always comes from a noble tribe not the money-grubbing tribes like the Gikuyu, the Igbo or the Shona.

How to Write about Africa

Africa is the only continent you can love—take advantage of this. It took an hour. In a fit of anger, maybe even low blood sugar — it runs in the family — I spent a few hours one night at my graduate student flat in Norwich, England, writing to the editor of Granta.

She must look utterly helpless. He is a cannibal who likes Cristal champagne, and his mother is a rich witch-doctor who really runs the country. African characters should be colourful, exotic, larger than life—but empty inside, with no dialogue, no conflicts or resolutions in their stories, no depth or quirks to confuse the cause.

I was busy working on a short story, busy working on my novel.May 09,  · InBinyavanga Wainaina published a brilliantly sarcastic essay in Granta called “How to Write About Africa,” advising people on how to sound spiritual and compassionate while writing a.

—How to Write About Africa, Binyavanga Wainaina Say the words ‘Kenyan Literature’, and you might instantly think of Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, or perhaps Meja Mwangi. Both are luminaries of contemporary African literature who are published worldwide, and their success is, of course, entirely deserved.

InAfrica ceased to exist. The world was safe, and the winners could now concentrate on being caring, speaking in aid language bullet points.

If there was a new map, Africa would be divided into three: 1) Tiny flares of horribleness – Mugabe, undemocratic, war, Somalia, Congo; 2) Tiny flares of wonderfulness – Mandela, World Cup, safari.

Wainaina's satirical essay "How to Write About Africa", published in Granta magazine inattracted wide attention. [8] Inhe was given an award by the Kenya Publisher's Association, in recognition of his services to Kenyan literature.

From an African perspective, this oversimplification of an entire continent can be frustrating. Kenyan writer Binyavanga Wainaina explores this frustration in the satirical essay 'How to Write About Africa.' Summary.

How not to write about Africa in 2012 – a beginner's guide

The essay jumps right in with 'advice' for Western writers. Wainaina gives a list of cliché words to use in titles and subtitles. This really good article by the Kenyan writer Binyavanga Wainaina on 'How to Write about Africa' was recently shared with me. It was published by Granta magazine. One will be surprised to see that this is exactly the way Africa is depicted in Western televisions, magazines, news, and books.

Such an interesting read, very satirical.

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Wainaina how to write about africa
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