International and local writers gather for the Doek literary festival
Doek, together with the International Chair of Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia in the UK, this week revealed who the writers are to attend the Doek Literary Festival, taking place from Thursday 21 until Saturday 23 April 2022 at the Goethe-Institut in Windhoek.
Sponsored by Bank Windhoek, this year’s festival highlights fiction in the novel and short form. A line-up of international and local writers is scheduled to participate in readings, and panel discussions and facilitate creative writing workshops for readers, writers, and literature lovers. “As a connector of positive change, we are proud to be associated with the festival,” said Bank Windhoek’s Head of Corporate Social Investment, Sponsorships, and Events, Bronwyn Moody. “We understand that literature reflects humanity and helps us understand each other better. We wish the participants all the best.”
Headlining the festival is award-winning Zimbabwean novelist, playwright, and filmmaker Tsitsi Dangarembga who also chairs Creative Writing at the East Anglia Uni. Her books Nervous Conditions, The Book of Not, and This Mournable Body have received numerous literary awards, including a shortlisting for the Booker Prize in 2020. She was also the recent recipient of the Windham-Campbell Prizes, one of the world’s most lucrative literary prizes. The BBC named Nervous Conditions in 2018 as one of the top 100 books to have shaped the world.
Dangarembga will be joined by the first African woman to be awarded the Goethe Medal, Zukiswa Wanner, the South African editor, publisher, and author of the award-winning novels The Madams, Men of the South, and London Cape Town Joburg. Since 2006, when she published her first book, Wanner’s novels have been shortlisted for awards, including the South African Literary Awards and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize.
Nigerian writer Femi Kayode, who won the UEA/Little Brown Award for his debut novel Lightseekers, and Canadian writer and Professor of Creative Writing at UEA Jean McNeil, who has written more than fourteen books and been awarded numerous literary honours for her works, round up the festival’s international guest list.
Namibian flavours for the festival’s line-up will be provided by the 2022-2023 Doek Collective, a diverse cohort of emerging Namibian writers whose works have been featured in Doek! Literary Magazine or are forthcoming in other publications. The Doek Collective is bristling with young literary talent. It consists of Charmaine //Gamxamus, Roxane Bayer, Kay-Leigh De Sousa, and Ndawedwa Denga Hanghuwo, who won the inaugural fiction prize of the Bank Windhoek Doek Literary Awards in 2021, Katherine Hunter, Filemon Iiyambo, Dalene Kooper, and Ange Mucyo. Rémy Ngamije, Doek’s founder and chairperson, editor-in-chief of Doek!, and the award-winning author of The Eternal Audience of One, round up the exciting group of Namibian writers.
Readers can read all the writers’ biographies as well as the event programme on the festival’s website: https://festival2022.doek.africa/.
Created by the UEA, the ICCW offers five prominent writers, over five years, in five global regions, a year-long remit to help find, nurture, and promote new and emerging writers. For more information on the programme see https://www.uea.ac.uk/creative/international-chair-of-creative-writing.