On why Africa needs pulp fiction, not just literary writing

The Pacesetters series was really special. And only now, standing in their former section in the Botswana Book Centre, did I realise why. They were written for me. For three decades these books had been doing a very simple job: entertaining numerous ordinary Africans by telling exciting stories in environments we could imagine. They were not competing for the Man Booker Prize, and probably wouldn’t make the cut for any contemporary short-story competition. But that’s because they weren’t written for the White gaze. They were not made to explain Africa to half-curious American housewives, or home-sick African students in UK. These books were written not for the purpose of lifting a mirror to the European psyche, nor did they need to tell yet another tale of the New York immigrant experience. The Pacesetters series sought to entertain, but in doing so ended up connecting. [link]

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