Joshua Mmali launched his debut poetry collection The Women Are Here at Pawa254 in Nairobi on August 30, 2019.
Joshua Mmali first came to the attention of the African literary community with his children’s book, The Bad Friends (2003), which is part of a series of books aimed at creating HIV/Aids awareness. He has also written the plays God of Small Hands which explores race relations in the United States; The Land is Ours, Too, which revolves around property inheritance rights in a patriarchal society; and The Betrothal.
Joshua Mmali launched his debut poetry collection The Women Are Here in Nairobi this past Friday. The new collection covers a variety of topics like politics, social justice, human rights, love, and more. The Ugandan read poems from sections of his collection explaining handy bits about each of the ones he picked. You can hear a bit of the performance that we recorded on our trusty cellphone below;
After the poetry reading, he was moderated by Rachel Akidi who asked him about his motivations, his technique and other questions that a moderator should ask. After he answered her questions, she opened the floor to the audience and Nairobians engaged with the poet. It was a full-on discussion on feminism, the role of men in dismantling patriarchy, family life, and other topics that were close to the poet’s heart.
This session was followed by the poet signing books that had been bought. The books on sale this evening were The Women Are Here and The Betrothal.