Home LITERATURE – Senegalese author Aïssatou Diamanka-Besland participates in a collective book

[CULTURE-BOOK] – Senegalese author Aïssatou Diamanka-Besland participates in a collective book

Aïssatou Diamanka-Besland

The Senegalese author Aïssatou Diamanka-Besland participated in the writing of a collective book entitled: “Meeting at UNESCO, Light on the Feathers of African Diasporas” which brings together some fifteen authors who participated in the 1st edition of the Authors’ Fair of UNESCO’s African Week in 2019, which is led by Ms Paulette Correa. She released the video presentation of her text that was produced as part of African Week from November 23 to 26, 2021. She addressed the theme of slavery in this book. See the full video:  

“Hello, I am Aïssatou Diamanka-Besland writer, journalist, entrepreneur with political science background. In this collective book entitled “Meetings at UNESCO. Light on the feathers of African diasporas”, I addressed the issue of slavery. A central theme that transcends my writings in their totality. My text is entitled “Pont Suture Gorée Gorgée”. In this text, the main character is named after Wilson. He is an African-American, a son of a former slave who goes back to his ancestors. It is on the island of goré that he lands. Through this peril, it plunges back into the terrible history of slavery, that is to say, into the meanders of the triangular trade which had as protagonist Europe-Africa and America. Africa of course to its detriment and without its consent will be scarred with a sword. 

For more than four centuries, that is to say more than 400 years, men and women, the most able-bodied, the most beautiful, the most solid, will be torn from their land to go work in the plantations of America. These sons and daughters of Africa, who have become conquerors under duress, thrown into a new world, will be dehumanized, chosed, animalized, deprived of all their essence, of all their meaning, of all their humanity. 

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Indeed, through this unprecedented historical fact because the trade of African man became a gondola-headed product of European slave supermarkets is organized Europe seizes, He seized, grabbed the neck of Africa to confiscate more than 12 million African deportees between the 15th and late 19th century. The slaves were bound, chained and crammed to the bottom of a bilge for a perilous crossing. Wilson discovers with amazement his painful history on this island of Goré not far from the peninsula of Cape Verde, as do every year other grandsons and granddaughters of former slaves to understand the why of this inhuman trade. Through this dense journey, this historical quest for Wilson, he discovers how his ancestors were parked in this transit area before arriving in the lands of America, the West Indies, Haiti or Brazil.

The text is simple, dynamic, rhythmic, sometimes poetic. In front of Joe Ndiaye former co-keeper of the House of Slaves of Gorée, Wilson does not manage to hold back his tears of pain, unhappiness, distress. 

This is my participation in this collective book initiated by Jean Célestin Anjangué, an idea that began at the 1st UNESCO Authors’ Fair in 2019 which was a great meeting for African authors from the continent and the diaspora. Finally, as I often say: the evolution of Africa, its elevation, is when the narrative returns to its children. Every line produced by a child of MAMA AFRICA must be celebrated!”


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