CANEX Prize for Publishing in Africa 2024 jury

CANEX Prize for Publishing in Africa 2024 jury announced

Dr. Wale Okediran, Edwige-Renée Dro, and Ashraf Aboul-Yazid are on the jury for the CANEX Prize for Publishing in Africa. The announcement was made on June 7, 2024.

The CANEX Book Factory is a programme of events of the Creative Africa Nexus initiative of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) that is designed to spotlight and elevate the African book value chain through a literary prize, a Pan-African writing workshop, and an e-newsletter highlighting African literature.

In May, they announced the new CANEX Prize for Publishing in Africa to be awarded to the publisher of the best African fiction or non-fiction title. It is open to writers from all over the African continent with submissions to be reviewed by a team of experienced judges to select a long list before being narrowed down to the best works. The jury for this inaugural edition is now known to be Dr. Wale Okediran, Edwige-Renée Dro, and Ashraf Aboul-Yazid.

Here is some information on the jurors;

Dr. Wale Okediran
Dr. Wale Okediran

Dr. Wale Okediran (chair) serves as the Secretary-General of the Pan African Writers’ Association (PAWA). An accomplished author, he has published 14 novels, many of which are part of reading curriculum in various Nigerian universities. In 2010, he co-founded the Ebedi International Writers Residency in Iseyin, Oyo State, the first of its kind in Nigeria. He is also the Deputy Secretary-General for the Union of Writers from Africa, Asia, and Latin America. His novel, Tenants of the House, was adapted into a movie that has been featured on Netflix, showcasing his impact in both literature and media.

Renee Edwige Dro
Renee Edwige Dro

Edwige-Renée Dro is a writer, literary translator, and literary activist from Côte d’Ivoire. Her short stories and essays have been widely anthologized. Her interests lie in exploring linguistic justice via the via various variations of English and French Spoken in Africa. She has served on the juries of Caine Prize for African Writing; the PEN International Short Story Prize and she has been a member of the advisory board of the PEN/HEIM Translation Fund. Dro is an Africa39 laureate, a 2019 Miles Morland Fellow, and a 2021 Writing Fellow of the Iowa International Writing Program. In 2020, she founded 1949: the library of women’s writings from Africa and the black world in Abidjan.

Ashraf Aboul-Yazid
Ashraf Aboul-Yazid

Ashraf Aboul-Yazid, also known as Ashraf Dali, has been a significant figure in cultural journalism for over 30 years and has authored and translated around 40 books. His literary works have been translated into multiple languages, including Korean, Turkish, Persian, English, Sindhi, Spanish, and Malayalam. Aboul-Yazid’s dedication to culture and literature has earned him prestigious awards including the Manhae Prize in Literature in 2014 in the Republic of Korea and the Arab Journalism Award in Culture in 2015 in the UAE. He has served as the President of the Asia Journalist Association since April 2016 and is a founding member of the Congress of African Journalists (CAJ).

This jury will present a longlist of ten publishers in August followed by a shortlist of five finalists in September. A US$20,000 prize will be awarded to the publisher of the best trade book at the CANEX WKND at Algiers at CANEX WKND from October 16 – 19. The remaining four finalists will each receive US$2,000 in prize money.

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