My last post was about the 6 books I planned to read in May, and my excitement about the upcoming reads. I remember writing that I was probably going to fill up my free time with more responsibilities, and that is exactly what I did. I apologize for my silence in May. I read 2 books: Hibiscus and La Bastarda. Gladly, I enjoyed both, so those reviews are coming soon.
What do I have planned for June?
Well, June is Pride Month, which serves as recognition of the gay civil rights movement, and a celebration of LGBTQ+ people and their impact around the world. Recently, I’ve noticed more African books/novels that feature and discuss LGBTQ+ issues. From She Called Me Woman to Hairdresser of Harare, The Yacoubian Building and Under the Udala Trees. African writers are highlighting queer narratives, and in the process providing uniquely African interpretations of gender and sexuality (which is often ignored in favour of Western definitions).
In about 30 of the 54 countries in Africa, homosexual sex is criminalised, and may carry a death sentence in some countries. And with rampant anti-gay sentiment in several countries, many of these writers are risking their lives to tell queer stories. This month, to honour the contributions of queer people to the African literary scene, I am going to share works that feature or are written by Africans who are members of the LGBTQ+ communit .
To start things off, I have created a goodreads list with 50 queer African books. Here’s a screenshot of some of the books included in the list.
The list is not perfect, I’m looking for more intersex and trans representation, but I think it’s a good start. If you are interested in reading more diverse African Literature, you should definitely check it out, feel free to add any books I left out of the list, and share it with your friends.
Also, blogger, Amethyst Saw, has a collection of flash fiction stories that will be released on June 18th, 2019. The collection is called Stab Love With Flower Stalks, and in the spirit of #pride it features queer stories. You should check out her website for more information.
How is everyone doing this weekend? Ever been in a reading slump? How did you deal with it?