The FIFA World Cup 2022 is here and we again present the African Writers and Poets World Cup squads for Qatar 2022. This year we have a poetry, prose, and nonfiction squad headed to the Middle East.
In 2014, the world cup was in Brazil and we posted this up to celebrate the biggest sports tournament on the planet. We followed up when all eyes were on Russia with this gem in 2018. With this being the third FIFA World Cup while this blog has been running, it’s only fair that we do this again.
Just like in the two previous editions, we are designing a squad to represent Africa should we need to send a team if a writing world cup was running. Just like in 2018, the squads are not just for prose but for poetry and nonfiction are included. The task is simple. Choose four goalkeepers, eight defenders, eight midfielders, six strikers, and a coach to send to Qatar like in any world cup team.
In this instance, the goalies are the ones that ensure that they keep the faith as the last barrier against bad writing. The defenders wouldn’t be the ones we keep talking about in the news or blogs but like good defenders do a lot in ensuring that the craft is defended. The midfielders would be of two types; the energetic one churning out many good books and supporting the business to have a positive bank balance. These are also the ones you see at festivals either well-known or that you may never have heard of but represent Africa’s writing to the fullest. Strikers are the ones for whom everything they put out is a hit with the critics and the market.
Was this an easy task? Nope. The African and Black literary community is brimming with talent in the recent past. In spite of this, here are the full squads to send to the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar;
Maryse Condé, Alain Mabanckou, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Colson Whitehead
Véronique Tadjo, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi, José Eduardo Agualusa, Scholastique Mukasonga, Mia Couto, Pauline Chiziane, Patrice Nganang
Conceição Evaristo, Djaili Amadou Amal, Roland Watson-Grant, Fiston Mwanza Mujila, Zukiswa Wanner, Sami Tchak, Ondjaki, Sharon Dodua Otoo
Marlon James, Nnedi Okorafor, Noviolet Bulawayo, Remy Ngamije, Celeste Mohammed, Mohamed Mbougar Sarr.
Lebo Mashile, Lemn Sissay, Staceyann Chin, Yusef Komunyakaa
Abdourahman Waberi, Kama Sywor Kamanda, Nimrod Bena Djangrang, Suzanne Tanella Boni, Elaz Ndongo Thioye, Raymond Antrobus, Sylvie Kandé, Roberta Estrela D’Alva,
Romeo Oriogun, Yara Nakahanda Monteiro, Kayo Chingonyi, Safia Elhillo, Saddiq Dzukogi, Su’eddie Vershima Agema, Juliane Okot Bitek, Jean D’Amerique.
Sonia Sanchez, Canisia Lubrin, Warsan Shire, Koleka Putuma
Pumla Dineo Gqola, Howard French, David Olusoga, Sueli Carneiro
Olivette Otele, Ato Quayson, Olabisi Ajala, Stephen L Carter, Ada Ferrer, Hanif Abdurraqib, Louis-Philippe Dalembert, Djamila Ribeiro,
Minna Salami, Nanjala Nyabola, Siphiwo Mahala, Jumoke Verisimo, Clint Smith, Kojo Koram, Lerato Mogoatlhe, Carla Akotirene,
Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah, Sofia Samatar, Margo Jefferson, Kei Miller, Tiya Miles, Mukoma Wa Ngugi