In 1992, Margaret Busby compiled a pioneering work of literature by more than 200 women from Africa and the African Diaspora. The book clocked in at over 1000 pages of fiction, essays, poetry, drama, memoirs and children’s writing, and is widely regarded as an essential volume. This March, the month of Women’s History no less, Myriad Editions are set to release a follow-up: New Daughters of Africa. Naturally, it is our next Book of the Month. How could it not be?
New Daughters of Africa, once again compiled by Margaret Busby in a gargantuan editorial feat, showcases the creativity and achievements of contributors including Roxane Gay, Zadie Smith, and Diane Abbott. It is a behemoth of thought and reflection, exploring sisterhood, tradition, romance, race and identity – individually, and at large.
The importance of the initial publication of Daughters of Africa cannot be overstated, and New Daughters of Africa is just as significant. Last month Margaret Busby and Myriad Editions announced the £20,000 Margaret Busby New Daughters of Africa Award in celebration of the book’s publication and the significance of the contributors’ achievements. The award will cover tuition and accommodation costs for black, female students ordinarily resident in Africa to study at SOAS University of London.
Of course, it’s not just us who think so highly of New Daughters of Africa. Already, critics and publications are acknowledging the power of the work;
“Each of the pieces in this remarkable collection demonstrates an uplifting sense of sisterhood, honours the strong links that endure from generation to generation, and addresses the common obstacles women writers of colour face as they negotiate issues of race, gender and class, and confront vital matters of independence, freedom and oppression.” – Ninja Book Box
“New Daughters of Africa brings together the work of a new generation of female writers of African descent… there’s no doubt that it magnificently achieves its aim of honouring a unified heritage while showing the remarkable range of creativity from the African diaspora.”
– The Bookseller, Editor’s Choice
“New Daughters of Africa illuminates the richness and cultural history of this original continent and its enduring influence, while reflecting our own lives and issues today. Bold and insightful, brilliant in its intimacy and universality, this essential volume honours the talents of African daughters and the inspiring legacy that connects them – and all of us.”
– New Beacon Books
New Daughters of Africa is published by Myriad Editions on 7th March
(9781912408009, h/b, £30)