Pilgrimages’ Lagos Journey Comes To An End

The Pilgrimages journey for Alain Mabanckou ends in Lagos today. In the short time he’s been here he’s had the opportunity to experience Lagos at its best at various locations. It’s been quite the pleasure to host Alain and we can’t wait to read his journal of his Lagos travels when the Pilgrimages book is published in 2012. For now do find out the experiences of other writers on the Pilgrimages Blog and please leave a comment!

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Pilgrimages Route

The Pilgrimages Project

Pilgrimages is a ground-breaking, pan-African project organised by The Chinua Achebe Center Bard College, in partnership with Kachifo Limited in Nigeria, Kwani? Trust in Kenya, and Chimurenga in South Africa, in celebration of Africa’s first world cup.

The project involves 13 African writers visiting 12 cities across the continent and one in Brazil for two weeks during the World Cup. At the end of the project, each writer will produce a book of non-fiction travel literature based on their experiences, forming a series to be published next year.

The Writers

The writers and cities involved in the project are Funmi Iyanda (Durban), Alain Mabanckou (Lagos), Abdourahman A. Waberi 9Salvador, Bahia), Akenji Ndumu (Abidjan), Doreen Baingana (Hargeisa), Chris Abani (Johannesburg), Uzodinma Iweala (Timbuktu), Billy Kohora (Luanda), Kojo Laing (Cape Town), Binyavanga Wainaina (Touba), Yvonne Owuor (Kinshasha), Victor Lavelle (Kampala), Nicole Turner (Nairobi) and Nimco Mahmud Hassan (Khartoum).

Alain Mabanckou in Lagos

Alain Mabanckou from Congo-Brazzaville is considered one of the most talented writers in Francophone African literature today. His most notable works are Verre Casse (Broken Glass), Bleu-Blanc-Rouge(Blue-White-Red) and The African Psycho. His work, Memoirs of a Porcupine, won the Prix Renaudot, one of the highest distinctions in Francophone literature.

Alain visits Lagos from the 25th of June to 2nd of July 2010, during which time he will crisscross the city, from the ‘highbrow’ to the ‘slum’. Each day of his stay will alternate stops at football viewing centres, local bukkas and beer parlours, upmarket bars and relevant cultural events, and will include interviews with local denizens, artists, writers and other social commentators. Alain will be guided around the city by architect, writer and publisher, Ayodele Arigbabu, who will also blog about their daily experiences on the Pilgrimage website.

The Website

A dynamic and state-of-the art multimedia website has been launched as part of the Pilgrimages project, at http://www.pilgrimages.org.za. During the 13 Pilgrimages the writers and their local guides will blog on the website. Correspondents, artists and photographers in each city will also post topical content on the site.

The Books

The Pilgrimages Project will culiminate in the launch of twelve books in four African cities in January 2012 during the African Nations’ Cup. The collection promises to be the most significant, single addition to the continent’s archive of literary knowledge since the African Writers’ Series of the 1960s. The books will be published by Kachifo Limited in Nigeria, Kwani? Trust in Kenya, Chimurenga in South Africa and a francophone publisher to be announced.

For more information on the Pilgrimages Project, please visit the website here.

For more information on Pilgrimages and Alain Mabanckou in Lagos, please email info@kachifo.com, rayosword@gmail.com or call (+234) (0)7084344856

Image by Afri-Love

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