- Hardcover: 200 pages
- Published: 4/28/15
- IBSN: 9781617753558
- Genre: Poetry
This nine-piece box set, an African Poetry Book Fund (APBF) project, features the work of eight African poets.
“The chapbooks gathered here are almost overflowing with voice . . . . Each of these chapbooks is so worthy of praise and attention that it is not possible to do them justice in the space afforded this review. They deserve, and hopefully will receive, the specific and individual attention of critics and readers, and their authors deserve to enjoy long and noted careers.”
“I’ve been spending time with Eight New-Generation African Poets, a chapbook set edited by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani. In particular, I recommend the selection of poems by Vuyelwa Maluleke, full of devastating pronouncements.”
“We live in a curated world; the beauty of this collection is not just in the interplay of cover art and text, of preface and poem, but especially in its overall optimistic effect. This isn’t a curatorial project solely focused on refining our world, cutting it down to manageable size, reflecting the literary interests of its editors. Though it does this, it simultaneously opens up a whole new emergent modern trajectory of African poetry, adding to it words that are surprising not in their existence—we know that with greater funding, similar projects, changing patterns of readership, more than eight, more than ten new African poetry chapbooks of this quality could reach us each year—but in their specific, trenchant voices. Start clearly off a set of shelves—this is something to make space for, year after year.”
—Africa in Words
This elegant, limited-edition box set features nine chapbooks: eight volumes of poetry, plus an introduction chapbook by editors Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani. The eight African poets included are Peter Akinlabi, Viola Allo, Inua Ellams, Janet Kofi-Tsekpo, Liyou Mesfin Libsekal, Amy Lukau, Vuyelwa Maluleke, and Blessing Musariri.
The box set is an annual project of the African Poetry Book Fund, in collaboration with Akashic Books, which seeks to identify the best poetry written by African authors working today, with a special focus on those who have not yet published their first full-length book of poetry.
Eight New-Generation African Poets was included as part of The New Inquiry’s Summer Reading List.
Read a feature on Eight New-Generation African Poets at the Poetry Society of America.
See the individual chapbook covers below:
KWAME DAWES is the Ghanian-born, award-winning author of eighteen collections of poetry. He has won Pushcart Prizes, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Emmy, and was the 2013 awardee of the Paul Engel Prize. He currently teaches at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He is the author of Gomer’s Song; translator of Go de Rass to Sleep; and editor of So Much Things To Say, Eight New-Generation African Poets, New-Generation African Poets (Tatu), and New-Generation African Poets (Nne).
CHRIS ABANI a Nigerian-born, award-winning poet and novelist, currently teaches at Northwestern University in Chicago. He is the recipient of a PEN USA Freedom-to-Write Award, a Prince Claus Award, a Lannan Literary Fellowship, a California Book Award, a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, a PEN Beyond Margins Award, a PEN/Hemingway Award, and a Guggenheim Award. He is the author of Song for Night and Becoming Abigail and editor of Eight New-Generation African Poets, New-Generation African Poets (Tatu), and New-Generation African Poets (Nne).