Es'kia Mphahlele, Chemchemi and Pan-African Literary Publics

September 24, 2020 - 10:30 am to 11:30 am

Es'kia Mphahlele, popularly known as 'Zeke', is one of the most important African intellectuals of the mid-twentieth century. As a South African exile during this period, he would make a critical contribution to the creation of modern African literature in South, East, and West Africa. His involvement in the small magazines of the period -Transition, Black Orpheus, New African, The Classic, and Lotus amongst others - created literary publics across the continent. Professor Ouma (Department of English Literary Studies, University of Cape Town) will address Mphahlele's work from the perspective of his time in exile in Nairobi and his directing of the Chemchemi cultural center for artists and writers. If you require closed captioning to access the material in our event, please email Meredith Watkins (

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  • Concilium on Southern Africa