Nadine Aisha Jassat & Tsitsi Dangarembga: Outriders Africa Following in their Footsteps
As part of the Book Festival's Outriders programme exploring the shifting landscapes of contemporary Africa, rising star of Scottish poetry Nadine Aisha Jassat embarked on a poignant journey across the south-east of the continent with Zimbabwe-based writer and film-maker Tsitsi Dangarembga, whose 1988 debut Nervous Conditions was included in the BBC's 2018 list of the 100 books that shaped the world.
Fascinated by the rich tradition of storytelling in their shared Zimbabwean ancestry and the voices erased within it, they set out to retrace the funereal route of David Livingstone, whose body was carried from modern day Zambia to the coast of Tanzania by his two attendants, Susi and Chuma.
Their adventure took an unexpected turn when Jassat was forced to return to the UK at short notice during the height of the pandemic, leaving Dangarembga to complete the journey solo. They share their unforgettable experience, and some of the writing it inspired, with researcher Kate Simpson, whose own work seeks to bring the stories of the women of Livingstone’s expeditions out from the shadows.
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