- It is with sadness we report the passing on of South African novelist, essayist, and activist Nadine Gordimer, who received the Fonlon-Nichols Award this past spring at the ALA Annual Conference in Johannesburg, South Africa for her exemplary work as a writer and as a human rights activist. Several links are included in her remembrance from BBC News and the New York Times.
- As editors of the annual volume of essays arising from the 40th annual African Literature Association conference held in Johannesburg, South Africa in April 2014 we invite conference participants to send us article-length essays on the broad conference theme of “Texts, Modes and Repertoires of Living In and Beyond the Shadows of Apartheid”. The volume will appear as a Special Issue of the Journal of the African Literature Association and will be edited by Maureen Eke (series editor), Bhekizizwe Peterson (guest editor) and Abioseh Porter (JALA editor). The full text of this call for papers can be read here.
- At the 2014 ALA Meetings in Johannesburg, resolutions were passed by the membership concerning Gay and Lesbian rights as well as in support of the Academic Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions. The full text of these resolutions can be found on our ALA Resolutions and Executive Letters section.
- The African Literature Association, as so many throughout the world, celebrates the life and example of President Nelson R Mandela even as we are deeply saddened and we mourn his joining of the ancestors. Remembering Mr. Mandela: Statement from Dr. Soraya Mekerta, President of the African Literature Association.
- When Chinua Achebe's death was announced on March 22, the response of African literary scholars and practitioners was palpable. This book is a tribute to Achebe, his life and work, his place in Africa's history and his role in reclaiming the dignity of that history. These poems, short essays and letters extol one of Africa's greatest novelists, who was also a teacher, a colleague, and a noted and respected elder who understood his times. Once in a millennium, someone of princely bearing comes along to light the way for a people. In these entries, Professor Achebe's generous spirit shines like a guiding spirit: warm, urging, steadying.
- Members of the ALA share these words in joining the world's literary and academic communities to mourn the death of Professor Chinua Achebe. A memorial service was held for him at this year's conference.
- Executive letters are now available in the documents section, including letters exchanged between the ALA and Barack Obama, as well as a more recent exchange with Sweden's Minister of Culture, Lena Adelsohn Liljero.
- The editor of JALA invites submission of essays, reviews, and review-essays that reflect the range of primary materials, critical methodologies, and the many contending and complementary movements in African and African diaspora literatures and cultures. Deadlines for submissions are February 1 for the spring/summer issue and June 1 for the fall/winter issue. For more information, please read the JALA Submission Guidelines (pdf).
- The ALA stands with the people of Haiti and extends heartfelt sympathy over the massive earthquake that has hit the country with such tragic devastation and caused incredible loss of lives. Hope will never die among the living even as we mourn the lives lost. May the people of Haiti transcend the current, natural sense of grief and overwhelming hopelessness, and emerge more capable and resolute to put the pieces of their lives together and rebuild their country for a greater future.
- We encourage our members to please donate generously to legitimate relief bodies and organizations accepting relief funds for Haiti and the victims of the earthquake (see list below). No amount is too little; every dollar counts. An official letter will go out presently to the Haitian authorities.
Copyright 2015, The African Literature Association