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African literature is an eclectic mix of genres and traditions, and to enable us to appreciate this rich heritage, award winning essayist and writer, Isabella Akinseye has launched a television show that will help us wade into this infinite pool.
The show, Africana Literati, airs on Dstv’s Africa Magic Family (Channel 154) every Saturday at 11am and every Thursday at 2pm on Africa Magic World (Channel 155). Reruns of the show will air on Africa Magic Family on Thursday at 2pm. All times are UTC+1.
Season one, which is already on air, is 13 episodes long; each episode runs for half an hour, and those 30 minutes are stuffed with literary review, profiles of African literature greats, a vox pop segment revolving around books (e.g. question: “how much can you spend on a book?”).
There will also be a formal session teaching pronunciation, spelling, and African slang.
Africana Literati’s tagline surmises its whole purpose: Love Africa, Read Africa; it seeks to inculcate a reading culture, “with a focus on celebrating our own stories and culture,” according to Isabella Akinseye, who had an inkling of an idea for such a program back in 2009, shortly after which she established a literature review TV show that ran for a year, and was only interrupted by further studies.