Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
(Uganda) grew up in Uganda and studied creative writing at the University of Lancaster in the UK; she received her doctorate in the same subject. In 2013 she received the Kwani Manuscript Project for her thesis project, The Kintu Saga. This prize is given to still-unpublished manscripts by African writers. Her manuscript was published as a novel, titled Kintu, in 2014. She has won various other prizes including the 2014 Commonwealth Short Story Prize for "Let's Tell This Story Properly" and the 2018 Windham-Campbell Prize for Fiction. A mixture of Ugandan oral storytelling traditions, folktakes, myths, biblical elements and history is characteristic of her work. She lives and works in Manchester, where she teaches creative writing at the university.(WN 2019)
Archive available for: Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
Africa is often in the news with regard to wars, drought, famine, poverty and migration to Europe, as we see in the images of boating tragedies in the Mediterranean. But even though many problems remain to be solved, Africa is going through a process of socio-economic transformation. 'Africa is the Future' is more than just a slogan on a T-shirt. During this storytelling symposium organized in collaboration with the International Institute of Social Studies, academics, writers, poets and politicians from Africa and Europe speak to and with the public. They shared their stories and ideas about the future from and about the African continent, interspersed by muscial performances by Lamin Kuyateh. English spoken.
How did they express our (near) future in words or sound? In this literary and musical performance, seven festival authors each presented a new text or poem commissioned by Winternachten, with musical contributions by Syrian-born ud player Jaber Fayad. You saw and heard Ayelet Gundar-Goshen from Israel, HemelBesem from South Africa, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi from Uganda, Arshia Sattar from India, Leni Zumas from the United States and, from The Netherlands, Auke Hulst and Aafke Romeijn. Their inspiration was the festival theme Who Wants to Live Forever? The authors performed in their mother tongue or writing language with simultaneous projection of the English and/or Dutch translations.
Old myths about the origins of peoples and about the roots of cultures and conflicts continue to influence us in how we relate to the other and to the here and now. Indian mythologist Arshia Sattar, Ugandan novelist Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi and writer and poet Maarten van der Graaff discussed myths as identity arena. Political scientist and writer Wytske Versteeg lead the conversation. Poet Rodaan Al Galidi concluded the programme with a recitation of his own work.
Writers Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi and Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, and poet and translator Kawa Nemir choose literature, songs, speeches and sacred books with eternal value. They presented fragments and discussed their choices with Abdelkader Benali.
In 2018, Nansubuga Makumbi published her debut novel Kintu, a Ugandan epic in which an 18th-century curse continues to haunt decendants into the present time. Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, internationally succesful with her debut novel One Night, Markovitch, builds up tension in Waking Lions, in which a surgeon is blackmailed to give medical aid to a group of illegal immigrants. Kawa Nemir translated many poems from English to Kurdish and from Kurdish to Turkish; in 2019 his translation into Kurdish of Ulysses by James Joyce will be published