African Literature Association Conference

A Senegalese novelist and reporter immersed in the histories of civil war. A journalist digging for answers in Sierra Leone’s violent past. A master storyteller, working through her ancestral griots. In mid-June, these bright literary minds will converge on New Haven for Yale’s African Literary Association conference. Dedicated this year to “Africa and the World,” the conference will explore how the idea of “world literature” has changed, reshaping the African narratives that spring therefrom.

“Kintu” Author Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

Ugandan author Makumbi reads from her debut novel, Kintu. In this tale of immigration and home, a woman travels back to Uganda to organize her husband’s funeral and is stunned to discover a web of deception. Makumbi’s writing relies heavily on Ganda oral traditions, especially myths, Legends, folktales and sayings.



Thu, June 15, 2017, 12:30pm  Details
1 hr 30 min

“The Hired Man” Author Aminatta Forna

Scottish-Sierra Leonean author Forna discusses her novel, The Hired Man, set in Croatia. This suspenseful story centers a local hunter and a British family that has come to live in his town. A dark and infamous history of the place bubbles to the surface with the arrival of newcomers.




Fri, June 16, 2017, 12:30pm  Details
1 hr 30 min

“Behold the Dreamers” Author Imbolo Mbue

The Cameroonian novelist Mbue talks about her 2016 debut book, Behold the Dreamers. It tells the story of a Cameroonian couple living in New York City after immigrating; the fragility of making ends meet; and the vulnerability of their relationship and their future security to the rise or fall of an employer’s fortunes.




Fri, June 16, 2017, 5:30pm  Details
1 hr 30 min

“Never Look an American in the Eye” Author Okey Ndibe

Nigerian-American author Ndibe discusses his 2016 memoir Never Look an American in the Eye: Flying Turtles, Colonial Ghosts, and the Making of a Nigerian American, which examines the differences between Nigerian and American etiquette and politics; considers American stereotypes about Africa (and vice-versa); and juxtaposes African folk tales with Wall Street trickery.


Sat, June 17, 2017, 12:30pm  Details
1 hr 30 min