Great African Reads discussion

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message 1: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (last edited Dec 03, 2018 12:19PM) (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Welcome back to the short story reads side of the 2018 tour!

We plan to read two previous Caine Prize-winning short stories a month in the run-up to the 2018 Caine Prize in July, spending July reading the 2018 winner and shortlisted stories, and continuing with previous winners from August onwards.

Here's the proposed schedule. I've only included stories that are available online. There is an existing thread for the 2017 winner, which we plan to revisit in December. Hope you can read along!

1-15th Apr: The Museum by Leila Aboulela (2000, Sudan)
16-30th Apr: Discovering Home by Binyavanga Wainaina (2002, Kenya)
1-15th May: Weight of Whispers by Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor (2003, Kenya)
16-31st May: Seventh Street Academy by Brian Chikwava (2004, Zimbabwe)
1-15th Jun: Jungfru by Mary Watson (2006, South Africa)
16-30th Jun: Jambula Tree by Monica Arac de Nyeko (2007, Uganda)
July: 2018 winner and shortlisted stories
1-15th Aug: Poison by Henrietta Rose-Innes (2008, South Africa)
16th-31st Aug: Waiting by EC Osondu (2009, Nigeria)
1-15th Sept: Stickfighting Days by Olufemi Terry (2010, Sierra Leone)
16-30th Sept: Hitting Budapest by NoViolet Bulawayo (2011, Zimbabwe)
1-15th Oct: Bombay's Republic by Rotimi Babatunde (2012, Nigeria)
16-31st Oct: Miracle by Tope Folarin (2013, Nigeria)
1-15th Nov: My Father's Head by Okwiri Oduor (2014, Kenya)
15-30th Nov: The Sack by Namwali Serpell (2015, Zambia)
1-15th Dec: Memories we lost by Lidudumalingani (2016, South Africa)
15-31st Dec: The Story of the Girl Whose Birds Flew Away" by Bushra al-Fadil (2017, Sudan)


message 2: by Anetq, Tour Operator & Guide (new)

Anetq | 762 comments Mod
Sound excellent!


message 3: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Crampton (cramptonmargaret) | 49 comments Hope they’re on kindle!


message 4: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Margaret wrote: "Hope they’re on kindle!"

They available as PDFs images or PDF texts or html text (like how articles are published online). If you want to read them on your Kindle, it might be tricky, but you could – I am going to do this – copy the text (if it's not a scanned image) on to a word document, save as doc or docx and email it to your kindle email address.


message 5: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (last edited Mar 16, 2018 06:16AM) (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Anetq wrote: "Sound excellent!"

Thanks! Hope you plan to read along :)


message 6: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Crampton (cramptonmargaret) | 49 comments Wow thanks my email is cramptonmargaret@gmail.com


message 7: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Margaret wrote: "Wow thanks my email is cramptonmargaret@gmail.com"

Margaret, these stories are not available on Kindle. Your can 1) read them online 2) Transfer them to your kindle if possible – please refer to my previous comment.


message 8: by Cam (new)

Cam | 95 comments Thank you for setting this up Sofia - great idea! One more reason to look forward to April :D!


message 9: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Crampton (cramptonmargaret) | 49 comments If it’s pdf I can read it on my phone?


message 10: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Cam - Yay! So glad you are going join us! :)

Margaret: Yes of course! Just click on the links :)


message 11: by Diane , Head Librarian (new)

Diane  | 470 comments Mod
Fantastic!


message 12: by Tinea, Nonfiction Logistician (new)

Tinea (pist) | 406 comments Mod
This is so great! Thanks for identifying and linking to all these stories. Looking forward to the project.


message 13: by Jenny (new)

Jenny | 17 comments Really excited about this. Thanks for organizing!


message 14: by Aysha (new)

Aysha Bisimwa Ali (ayshabis) | 2 comments looking forward to reading along with you all!


message 15: by George P. (last edited Mar 30, 2018 08:28PM) (new)

George P. | 201 comments Sofia wrote: "Welcome back to the short story reads side of the 2018 tour!

We plan to read two previous Caine Prize-winning short stories a month in the run-up to the 2018 Caine Prize in July, spending July rea..."


With the photocopy of "The Museum" there are 2 other short stories by other African authors that follow it. Do you recommend them?
Perhaps after the end of the year we could have a poll and vote for which we liked the best? That could be interesting I think.


message 16: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Aysha, George, Jenny, Tinea - so happy you plan to join us! :)

George: that is an excellent idea. Will definitely set up a poll in December for that! :) As for the other two stories, they look really interesting, I haven't read them yet though.


message 17: by George P. (new)

George P. | 201 comments The link for the May 16-30 story goes to a journal web page that says: The following is an excerpt from the short story ‘Seventh Street Alchemy’ by Brian Chikwava. Was the intention to read this excerpt only?
I finished Weight of Whispers- a grim story, but I seem to like that sort.


message 18: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (last edited May 11, 2018 05:37PM) (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Hi George, that’s what I found on the Caine Prize webpage. I tried to find an unabridged version but wasn’t able to. I think we might just have to read what’s avilable online. Does that work for you?

I’m nearly done with the Weight of Whispers myself. Enjoying it so far. I’m actually studying the same conflict at grad school, so it’s very interesting to get a “literary” perspective that goes beyond statistics.

So glad you are a part of this project :)


message 19: by George P. (last edited May 11, 2018 07:19PM) (new)

George P. | 201 comments Sofia wrote: "Hi George, that’s what I found on the Caine Prize webpage. I tried to find an unabridged version but wasn’t able to. I think we might just have to read what’s avilable online. Does that work for you?..."

Sure, so that will be a quick one.
I looked in the public university web site here (they let residents check out books) to see if they had anything Chickwava had written but they had only some online review-think pieces discussing his novel Harare North- and the university doesn't give me access to those as I'm only a resident.
I noticed that if one has access to it or chooses to buy a copy, The Granta Book of the African Short Story has a story by Chickwava, along with Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie , Laila Lalami (Goodreads Author), Alain Mabanckou, Aminatta Forna, Leila Aboulela and many others. Available through amazon, ebay or other sites pretty inexpensively.


message 20: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Ok, so good news! Cam has access to an unabridged version of Seventh Street Alchemy through her library and has very kindly offered to share a scan of the story. I'll share the link as soon as possible :)

Thanks Cam!


message 21: by Nina (new)

Nina Chachu | 205 comments Not sure if this is the place to post this, but for those who are interested, the Caine Prize 2018 shortlist is out http://caineprize.com/the-shortlist/ and the individual stories can be downloaded. At least until the prizewinner is announced in July or so. Then the shortlisted stories and others are published in an annual volume of stories


message 22: by Cam (new)

Cam | 95 comments Nina wrote: "Not sure if this is the place to post this, but for those who are interested, the Caine Prize 2018 shortlist is out http://caineprize.com/the-shortlist/ and the individual stories can be downloaded..."

Thank you for flagging this up! I didn't realise you could download them already. Very Nigeria-heavy this year... I'm looking forward to reading them!


message 23: by Cam (new)

Cam | 95 comments Sofia wrote: "Ok, so good news! Cam has access to an unabridged version of Seventh Street Alchemy through her library and has very kindly offered to share a scan of the story. I'll share the link as soon as poss..."

Seventh Street Alchemy: A Selection of Writings from the Caine Prize for African Writing 2004 (winning story only) can be accessed here https://framadrop.org/r/gEpHTWfeKK#Wp...


message 24: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Nina wrote: "Not sure if this is the place to post this, but for those who are interested, the Caine Prize 2018 shortlist is out http://caineprize.com/the-shortlist/ and the individual stories can be downloaded..."

Thanks so much Nina, I saw that too! :) Looks like an interesting collection of stories!


message 25: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Cam wrote: "Sofia wrote: "Ok, so good news! Cam has access to an unabridged version of Seventh Street Alchemy through her library and has very kindly offered to share a scan of the story. I'll share the link a..."

Thanks Cam!


message 26: by Jenny (new)

Jenny | 17 comments Nina wrote: "Not sure if this is the place to post this, but for those who are interested, the Caine Prize 2018 shortlist is out http://caineprize.com/the-shortlist/ and the individual stories can be downloaded..."

Thanks, Nina!


message 27: by George P. (new)

George P. | 201 comments Cam wrote: "Sofia wrote: "Ok, so good news! Cam has access to an unabridged version of Seventh Street Alchemy through her library and has very kindly offered to share a scan of the story. I'll share the link a..."

I just downloaded it and it worked well, so will read it soon.
George


message 28: by George P. (new)

George P. | 201 comments The Title of the May 16-31 story is actually "Seventh Street Alchemy" rather than "Academy" (see: Seventh Street Alchemy: A Selection of Writings from the Caine Prize for African Writing 2004).


message 29: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Oops, my phone must have autocorrected that. Ill change it asap. Thanks


message 30: by George P. (last edited May 20, 2018 01:49PM) (new)

George P. | 201 comments George wrote: "Perhaps after the end of the year we could have a poll and vote for which we liked the best? That could be interesting I think..."

I discovered today that there is a "Listopia" list of Caine prize winners readers can vote on, except they are mostly compilations of all the shortlist nominees of individual years, and short story collections by writers which include their Caine prize winning story. I added a couple of the stories we have already read to the list, and I was just the 4th reader to vote on it. See https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/3...


message 31: by Anetq, Tour Operator & Guide (new)

Anetq | 762 comments Mod
Btw. there is a collection of the first ten years' winners 10 Years of the Caine Prize for African Writing plus the African booker winners.
Handy as it turned out I had access to the ebook through a university library - now I've even read the 2001 story :) Maybe others have that option as well?


message 32: by Cam (new)

Cam | 95 comments Anetq wrote: "Btw. there is a collection of the first ten years' winners 10 Years of the Caine Prize for African Writing plus the African booker winners.
Handy as it turned out I had access to th..."


Thanks for flagging it up, turns out I have access to it via the uni library as well!


message 33: by Nina (new)

Nina Chachu | 205 comments There are compilations of shortlisted stories for each of the Caine Prizes with additional stories coming out of writing workshops conducted in a given year. "Unfortunately" - for those in the US/UK/Europe - these collections seem to be only available in physical format, at least as far as I can tell, so if you are a Kindle devotee you might be out of luck! But these volumes are often republished by various African publishers, so if a member of this group is based on the African continent, s/he might be able to get a copy locally.


message 34: by PS, Short Story Reading Chief (new)

PS | 143 comments Mod
Thanks Wim for taking over the short story reads. I’m sorry I haven’t been able to update the threads – I dislocated my shoulder blade a couple of months ago and been dealing with repeated dislocations since. Slightly better now so I’ll be back to updating threads from the 15th onwards :)

Thanks again Wim. Much appreciated.


message 35: by Wim, French Readings (new)

Wim | 801 comments Mod
You're welcome Sofia. I'm happy to read you're back and hope you get fully better soon!


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