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Kumi: New-Generation African Poets, A Chapbook Box Set

Edited by: and

This 10-piece, limited-edition box set—an African Poetry Book Fund (APBF) project—features the work of nine new African poets.

Now available for preorder. All preorders will ship on or before December 3, 2024.

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Forthcoming: 12/3/24

$36.95 $27.71

What people are saying…

“Dawes and Abani have taken on the vital project of publishing short collections by contemporary poets from Africa, packaged together in beautiful boxed sets.”
New York Times Magazine

“An ambitious, vital project that delivers exactly what it promises . . . As a group, the chapbooks dispel stereotypes about African writing. They also illustrate what editors Dawes and Abani note about the many ways poets can understand or redefine their ties to Africa. These insights are poignant and valuable, especially at a time when millions around the globe find themselves somewhere between new countries and ancestral lands they’ve left behind.”
Washington Post

Additional praise for the African Poetry Box Sets:

“Editors Dawes and Abani introduce readers to eleven emerging African poets with distinctive perspectives in this twelve-piece, limited-edition box set. Sponsored by the African Poetry Book Fund (APBF), this project has been in production since 2014.”

“The African Poetry Book Fund’s New-Generation African Poets: A Chapbook Box Set is one of the most important annual literary projects, presenting to a wide audience the work of fresh and promising poets in the continent and its diaspora.”
Open Country Magazine

“There is quite certainly nothing to doubt about the quality of poems collected here . . . Each poem has an edge that cuts deeply, and every surface of the set is adorned with Victor Ehikhamenor’s vibrant artwork . . . Eight poets hailing from Kenya, Nigeria, Sudan, Tanzania, and Zambia, each lauded in introductions by Dawes, coeditor Chris Abani, and a cohort of other poets, make New Generation African Poets: Tatu a collection pulsing with fresh talent in a series that poetry lovers worldwide should be grateful for.”
Shelf Awareness

“Chris Abani and Dawes also edited Tatu, a collection of contemporary poetry by African poets due out in the spring, as part of their yearly New-Generation African Poets Series.”
The Root

“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.”
Untucked Magazine

“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.”
—Kenyon Review

“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 clearing off a set of shelves—this is something to make space for, year after year.”
Africa in Words


Now available for preorder. All preorders will ship on or before December 3, 2024.

The limited-edition box set is a project started in 2014 to ensure the publication of up to a dozen chapbooks every year by African poets through Akashic Books. The series seeks to identify the best poetry written by African poets working today, and it is especially interested in featuring poets who have not yet published their first full-length book of poetry.

The nine poets included in this box set are: Nurain ládèjì, Sarpong Osei Asamoah, Claudia Owusu, Nome Emeka Patrick, Qhali, Connor Cogill, Feranmi Ariyo, Dare Tunmise, and Adams Adeosun.

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • Published: 12/3/24
  • IBSN: 9781636141886


Kwame Dawes is the Ghana-born, award-winning author of twenty-two books of poetry—including Sturge Town from Norton—and numerous other books of fiction, criticism, and essays. He has won Pushcart Prizes, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Emmy, and was the 2019 awardee of the Windham-Campbell Prize in Poetry. He is series editor of the African Poetry Book Series—the latest of which is Kumi: New-Generation African Poets, A Chapbook Box Set. He currently teaches at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

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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 editor of Lagos Noir and the coeditor of Kumi: New-Generation African Poets, A Chapbook Box Set.

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