Read it! Loved It! Weekly Round-Up

by - 12:17

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It's a nice sunny Sunday here (don't worry - I am enjoying the weather from my living room), and I'm back with my round-up of reads. This week saw a mix of oldies and newbies on the reading front. Here, we go! 

Did you know Wole Soyinka sang? Moshood shares this bit of information over on Africa is a Country.

"For a time in his mid-20s, Soyinka was a cafe singer in Paris. Two decades later, back in Nigeria, he wrote a two-track album named 'Unlimited Liability Company'. Although much of the singing was fone by actor and musician Tunji Oyelana & His Benders, Wole Soyinka's voice also features on both tracks.

Image via discogs

Also on Africa is a Country, Decolonising the Lens by Bhakti Shrigarpure focuses on Rwandan novelists Scholastique Mukasonga's novel Our Lady of the Nile, which has been adapted into a film from French-Afghan writer and director Atiq Rahimi:

"'Our Lady of the Nile' has stayed steadily in the limelight in the last few years. The original French publication in 2012 was followed by the English translation in 2014, as the book garnered awards and acclaim. And now, Rahimi has given it yet another life by bringing it to the big screen Admirably shot entirely in Rwanda, with Rwandan actors and with plenty of dialogue in Kinyarwanda, Rahini's film is visually breathtaking, tightly edited and an emotional rollercoaster. It is no surprise that it has already snapped up some awards at film festivals.

Still from Our Lady of the Nile via

Over on True Africa, Jackie Budesta Butanda writes about building a sanctuary for creating stories in Uganda.

Next is this piece on the real Lord of the Flies. I first read Golding's Lord of the Flies at 14 for my Literature GCSEs/O Levels, and I remember - even at that age - being mortified by what I read and appalled by the lack of humanity of the boys. This article focuses on six boys from Tonga who were shipwrecked on a deserted island in the 1960s. "What they do, this little tribe? They made a pact never to quarrel."

There's a great new forthcoming series on African feminisms in dialogue, on "how young, African feminist scholars are using their life experiences as sources and resources for theorising their feminism," and Rama Salla Dieng introduces us to it. 

On the film/series front, I'm yet to watch Queen Sono, but Tsogo Kupa writes that Netflix might not be the right home for a new wave of African film and television, and does this by focusing on the new Queen Sono series. 

I also read a lot of music-related content this week - mostly old ones, including a 2014 write-up from Marissa Moorman on Brenda Fassie - "a woman who stepped out of line, talked out of turn, wore the pants, pulled up her skirt, loved women and men," and a throwback interview with Fela Kuti from 1993. Staying with Fela, okayafrica published an interview with Bernard Matussiere on photographing Fela and the Kalakuta Queens. On interviews, check out Yomi Adegoke's one with Megan Thee Stallion, while gal-dem shared some lockdown music, including a new EP from Little Simz, which she recorded during lockdown. 
Image via Africa is a Country

Little Richard passed away this weekend (both Brenda Fassie and Little Richard passed away on May 9 - Fassie in 2004 and Little Richard 16 years later in 2020), and read an older article on Little Richard from 2015 in the Oxford American:

"Music fans are insatiable. The records are not enough. We are historians, anthropologists, archivists, psychologists. Little Richard is not just a legend but one of the last people alive among that first wave of rock & roll, the prime movers and shakers. So it is probably inevitable to treat Richard Penniman like a public treasure.

Moving away from music, a friend shared with me this read on how today people are finding partners using techniques from management consultancy. 

Finally, Friday was VE (Victory in Europe) Day, and marked 75 years, and my readings centred on the African soldiers that fought for Britain during WWII. First, a photo essay from last year on Britain's Abandoned Black Soldiers. Followed by a video from 2015 on West Africa's soldiers in Burma. That's all for this week. 

Photo via Foreign Policy

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