Archive, Lectures

Emmanuel Dongala, Billy Kahora, and Nnedi Okorafor


Fiction and Poetry Reading


Emmanuel Boundzéki Dongala is a Congolese chemist and novelist. He is currently Richard B. Fisher Chair in Natural Sciences at Bard College at Simon’s Rock.As a chemist, his specialty is stereochemistry and asymmetric synthesis, as well as environmental toxicology. He is the author of a number of award-winning novels including Johnny Mad Dog (French: Johnny Chien Méchant), Little Boys Come from the Stars, and most recently, Group Photo by the Riverside (French: Photo de groupe ai bord du fleuve) which was named “Best French Novel of 2010” by the French literary magazine LIRE. His work is featured in the Penguin Book of Modern African Poetry, and he has been the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship.


Billy Kahora studied Creative Writing as a Chevening Scholar at the University of Edinburgh in 2007. Before that, he spent eight years studying and working in South Africa, and was Editorial Assistant for All in Washington D.C. He also has degrees in journalism and media studies. Kahora now lives and works in Kenya, where he is Managing Editor of the literary journal Kwani, established in Nairobi in 2003.


Nnedi Okorafor is the author of the critically acclaimed novel Who Fears Death (a Nebula Award Nominee and Tiptree Honor Book). Her other novels include Zahrah the Windseeker (winner of the Wole Soyinka Prize), The Shadow Speaker (winner of the CBS Parallax Award) and Long Juju Man (winner of the Macmillan Prize for Africa). Her novel Akata Witch will be released in North America in April and her Disney chapter book, Iridessa and the Fire-Bellied Dragon Frog, will be released in 2012. Okorafor holds a PhD in literature and is a professor of creative writing at Chicago State University.


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