The Death of An Idea: Malawi Writing Today II launched in the Malawi cities of Blantyre and Lilongwe on June 30 and July 9, 2019.
In 1999, Malawi Writing Today: A PEN Anthology of Recent Writing in Malawi edited by Kingston Lapukeni Phiri which featured the writing of Steve Chimombo, Rycken Baobab, Edison Mpina, David Kerr, and Kunkeyani Maliro debuted. It was the first and only book attempted by Pen Malawi, the Malawian arm of the international organisation founded to promote friendship and intellectual co-operation among writers everywhere.
In 2019, two decades after the first edition, Pen Malawi produced a sequel of this anthology called The Death of An Idea: Malawi Writing Today II. This year’s version edited by Egidio Hermes Mpanga features the writing talents of Steve Chimombo, David Rubadiri, Francis Moto, John Lwanda, Jack Mapanje, Q Malewezi, Luckier Chikopa, Amanda Nazombe, Stanley Onjezani Kenani, Linley Mayenda, Frank Chipasula, Zondiwe Mbano, Rhoda Zulu, Matilda Phiri, Temwani Mgunda and Ken Lipenga.
Pen Malawi President Alfred Msadala while promoting the book said that Pen Malawi would be publishing a new anthology every two years which could only be a good thing. Waiting twenty years for the next version can get really tiring.
The first launch of the new anthology was at the Jacaranda Cultural Centre in Blantyre on June 30 with writers who contributed attending. On July 9, it was the turn of Lilongwe to see the newest publication from the Southern African country with the event happening at the Story Club Arts Café. The Lilongwe event had a first book auction where the first book was bought by Yamikani Chikoti at K100,000 while the second book was bought by Mary Mpanga, MP, at K50, 000
Here are images from the launches in the two cities from the event Facebook pages.