WritiVision Review Roundup: 10 Best-of-The-Web Nonfiction Pieces in 2016
2016 has been an exciting year for African literature in particular and in general the rest of this entity called global literature. Paul Beatty easily graced the hallmarks of history when he became the first American writer to win the Booker Prize. Bob Dylan, a brilliant rock artiste and an exceptional lyricist, beat Ngugi Wa’ Thiongo, Joyce Carole Oates and others to win the much coveted Nobel Prize. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Pettinah Gappah, Teju Cole, Stella Manyinka, Chinelo Oparanata, Zukisuwa Wanner, Helen Oyeyemi, Helon Habila, Chuma Nwokolo and the members of the African writing community have done a wonderful job in assuring Africa’s place on the literary map. 2016 was also a harvest of new voices shinning in the literary limelight: from Innocent Imaculeta Acan to Nnenna Ike-Njoku to Gratitude Fisher.
So, it was a delight when the curator of Writvision asked me to list my best on-the-net fiction piece for the year 2016.
Pwaangulongii Dauod’s vibrant writing style awakens the titillating memories of reading Binyavanga Wainaina’s One Day I Will Write About This Place. This nonfiction piece tackles the thorny issues of sexuality and ridicules our small-mindedness. It is piece that will surely keep you awake on a chilly harmattan night.
Ainehi Edoro needs no introduction as she doubles as the brain behind Africa’s foremost literary blog- Brittle Paper, and a lecturer. In this masterfully crafted essay, Ainehi bemoans that despite how far we have come, African literature is still viewed based on its thematic and anthropological qualities.
Adichie never disappoints her reading audience. In the heat of the misogyny-satiated atmosphere of the American election and the wave of my feminism and your feminism are not mates, Adichie pens down a beautiful letter on feminism.
Obi-Young is one of those rare essayists whom you could read a ten thousand word piece from and not be bored to tears. In this insightful and well researched essay, Obi-Young puts his foot down on the issue of Bob Dylan and his controversial Nobel Prize.
Beautiful is indeed a beautiful account of Lagos like never before. What distinguishes this piece from others is the infusion of FOOTBALL. Hmmm, football, Lagos and creative writing- a sure way to get eyegarsms.
When Adichie described Zadie Smith as a hot babe, she was not being miserly with words. In the article, Jackie Nickerson expounds on Zadie’s life, career, carriage, charisma, style and individuality. Instead of just crushing on this pawpaw-skinned writer, you might want to check out this article.
This is an article that exudes love, excellence, style, determination, strength and courage of Michelle Obama. Chimamanda Adichie and Gloria Steinem should be win an award for Best Chemistry in a Collaborative Piece.
Yes porn. The New Yorker magazine is unapologetic in its selection of themes and topic. In this article, backed up by facts and figures, Katrina Forrester exhumes the polarizing effect of the internet on the modern pornographic industry. Advice: Read this alone.
I call Nkiacha Atemnkeng the 2016 Nostradamus. In this powerful essay that was published few weeks to the release of the Caine Prize’s shortlist, Atemnkeng made it clear that African literature needs fresh voices to clinch the Caine Prize. Lilidumalingani fulfilled that prophesy.
When one of the few black Booker winning writers pens an essay on diversity, it becomes too irresistible to ignore. Marlon James is tired, like the rest of all the members of the united league of oppressed, that white people should chair diversity debates.
What is your best nonfiction piece? Put it down in the comment section for me to read.
Innocent Chizaram Ilo: writer, jollof rice enthusiast and lazy reader. He lives alone in a cabin overlooking the blue lake where he hopes to find love one day.