Chika Unigwe is a Man Booker International Prize 2017 judge

Chika Unigwe
Chika Unigwe

Chika Unigwe is one of the judges who have been announced for the 2017 Man Booker International Prize 2017.

Chika Unigwe is the author of novels like Tear Drops (1993), A Rainbow for Dinner (2002), On Black Sisters Street (2009, 2011 Jonathan Cape, UK and Random House NY) and Night Dancer (Jonathan Cape, 2012) (2002),Thinking of Angel (2005), and Dreams (2004).  She won the Nigerian Prize for Literature in 2012 for her book On Black Sisters Street; this is the richest prize in African literature with the winner going home with US$100,000.

She is also one of the infamous Africa39ers that have been at the forefront of the Africa literature narrative in the last couple of years.

Apart from her work in English and Dutch, her short stories and essays have appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, Guernica, Aeon and many other journals. Her works have been translated into several languages.

She will be joining other judges to decide which in 2017 is the second year of the newly evolved Man Booker International Prize, which was originally launched in 2005. The 2017 judging panel will be looking for the best translated fiction book of the year, selected from entries published in the UK between 1 May 2016 and 30 April 2017.

The 2016 prize was won by Korean author Han Kang and her translator Deborah Smith for The Vegetarian. The £50,000 prize was split equally between author and translator for the first time.

“One of the best things about the new Man Booker International prize was hearing it described as ‘a win for literary translation as a whole’, which seemed absolutely correct and wholly appropriate.” Deborah Smith, The Irish Times

“Novelists, poets, translators, linguists – and above all readers – the judges of the 2017 Man Booker International Prize have a particular enthusiasm, experience and discernment that will serve them well in the year ahead. They have an outstanding chair in Nick Barley, who has built the Edinburgh International Book Festival into one of the most wide-ranging and inventive literary festivals in the world.” comments Fiammetta Rocco, Administrator of the Man Booker International Prize.

The ‘Man Booker Dozen’ of 12 or 13 books will be announced in March 2017 and the shortlist of six books in April 2017. The winner will be announced in May 2017.

By James Murua

This blog is run by James Murua a Nairobi, Kenya based lover of books.

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