(Zimbabwe, 1966) is Editor-at-Large of Scottish independent publishing firm Canongate Books, a senior Research Fellow at Manchester University and Chair of the Cain Prize for African Writing. A London-based editor and critic, she was the founder Publishing Editor of Indigo Press. Her journalism has appeared in The Telegraph, Guardian and Observer newspapers, and she is a contributor to the 2019 anthology New Daughters of Africa. Her broadcasting includes reviews for NPR and BBC4.(WN 2020)
Archive available for: Ellah Wakatama
What role do the doorkeepers of literature play - publishers, editors, booksellers, agents and scouts - when it comes to the colour filter? Who ultimately decides what is "good literature" and on what basis? We discuss the issue with Ellah Wakatama, Editor-at-Large of Scottish publishing firm Cannongate Books, Ebissé Rouw, editor at Dutch podcast platform Dipsaus Publicaties, and Mylo Freeman, writer and illustrator of children's books best known for her Princess Arabella picture-book series.
To what extent has African literature been able to wrest itself free of linguistic colonization? And what about other languages? Can the predominance of English still be stopped, or is it a lost cause? Liberian-Dutch writer and poet Vamba Sherif discusses the issue with American-Kenyan writer, poet, university lecturer in English and activist Mukoma Wa Ngũgĩ and with Ellah Wakatama, Editor-at-Large of Scottish publishing firm Cannongate Books. She is also a senior Research Fellow at Manchester University and Chair of the Caine Prize for African Writing.
Tip: Mukoma Wa Ngũgĩ also appears at the Storytelling Symposium "Decolonising the Mind: What Happened to You?" on Thursday, 16 January, at the International Institute of Social Studies.