The list of five finalists for our “Les Afriques Literary Award” was unveiled this Monday, October 11, 2021. “Fille, femme, autre” by Bernardine Evaristo / “La danse du vilain” by Fistpn Mwanza Mujila / “Les jango” by Abdelaziz Baraka Sakin / “Les lumières d’Oujda” by Marc Alexandre Oho Bambe / “Mère à mère” by Sindiwe Magona.
The list of five finalists for our “Les Afriques Literary Award” was unveiled this Monday, October 11, 2021, the president of the Prix Flores Agnès Ngoan Béti wanted to congratulate the finalists: “We are pleased to list below the five books that will compete in the final of the “Prix Les Afriques”, 2021 edition. We congratulate the finalists and encourage them to continue. We thank the writers and publishers who were not selected and encourage them to continue to participate in the “Les Afriques Prize”. We’ve had a wonderful time with your books all this year. As you already know, the particularity of our Literary Prize is its “after-sales service” almost unique in the world; namely that thousands of copies of the award-winning novel are distributed and read in places of cultures, high schools and universities in Africa in particular. It is therefore a great cultural and even intellectual responsibility that awaits the winner of our 2021 edition, throughout 2022”.
As a reminder, the pre-selection was published in April 2021 with a jury composed of 18 people. “This is also an opportunity for us to thank the 18 people who formed our Reading Committee this year: Alain, Estelle, Héloïse, Philippe, Aurore, Colinette, Bertrande, Nicole, Grâce, Cédric, Elisabeth, Flore Agnès, Marina, Nathasha, Jessica, Blaise, Aminata and Christian.” said Flores Agnès Ngoan Béti.This Reading Committee works as a volunteer for La CENE Littéraire. 21 pre-selected books were read carefully followed by taking reading notes, reviews and columns during the different working sessions.
However, what President Flores Agnès Ngoan Béti deplores is the lack of popularization of cultural initiatives in the South “Western media, in particular, are struggling to make cultural initiatives in the South visible. Conversely, journalists from the South and especially from Africa are very interested in their initiatives, which are widely publicized on the continent. This is an imbalance that has no place in a cultural world where fraternity, equality and mutual respect are, for the moment, only hoped for. They have to stop being empty words. We have to get into practice. The world of culture must succeed where politics and the economy lag behind. It must incorporate the equality and mutual respect written in black letters on the white pages that it boasts and carries. Only then will he be able to attain the idealism and greatness to which he claims.”
It should be noted that the “Les Afriques” prize has been awarded since 2016, the most important fiction in African and Afro-descendant literature published in the previous year. It is awarded annually, by vote of a reading committee and then a jury made up of influential personalities from the African literary milieu.
The prize is endowed with an amount of 6000 Swiss francs, a work worth 3500 Swiss francs by the artist Momar Seck, from the purchase of copyright for the French-speaking Africa area of the winning novel if agreement with the publisher.