Perpétue Miganda was the featured writer at the #KigaliLit event at the Innovation Village in Kigali, Rwanda. The event which was hosted on May 30, 2018 was moderated by blogger and poet Eric Ngangare.
#KigaliLit, short for Kigali Literature, is a literary event that brings young and established authors alike from Kigali and further afield to participate in a reading & discussion on the writing process of works of fiction & what inspires them. The event organised by Huza Press with other partners like the Goethe-Institut Kigalo has hosted many including Kenya’s Boniface Mwangi and the Caine Prize writers.
The featured writer for May 2018 was Perpétue Miganda from Burundi. Miganda has held several positions in the field of education, human rights and peace processes in her native country, before moving to Rwanda in 2001 with her family. She then worked as an independent consultant in the field of governance. From 2008 to 2014, she was the Principal Officer for Gender and Community Development at the East African Community Secretariat.
She released her first book Trésors du Burundi Ancestral (Treasures of Ancestral Burundi) a nonfiction offering described as An Anthropological memoir in 2017. In the book she addresses the next generation which has recently started to ask questions about the pre-colonial past and the way of life of their ancestors. Here is a blurb of the book from its Amazon page translated from French using Google.
Treasures of ancestral Burundi plunge us into an era more or far distant from an ancient small kingdom of East Africa which, for millennia, had developed ancestral knowledge whose main theme was harmony and cohesion in all aspects of life. Very close to nature, the Burundians emphasized respect for life, mutual love and mutual support, the high sense of responsibility, the hard work that was involved in the celebrations of life. It is with the external contributions that this model of society has been unstructured and that the country entered a cycle of violence, causing deep social traumas as well as the loss of identity references. In the form of testimonials and examples from everyday life, this book offers a way out through ancestral best practices that would be adjusted to the current context of globalization.
The event which ran in French included the writer reading excerpts from the book followed by a moderated discussion with blogger and poet Eric Ngangare known by his stage name Eric 1key. They spoke about traditional customs and myths in which they dealt with the question why these are disappearing from common knowledge.
Apart from the discussions, there was a performance of the Inanga musical instrument by the writer’s son Olympe Niragira.
Here are images from the event courtesy of Huza Press.