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British Journalist and Author Reni Eddo-Lodge speaks during the Jaipur Literature Festival 2019, at Diggi Palace in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India Jan 27,2019.

British-Nigerian Writer Reni Eddo-Lodge Makes UK Literature History

Amid ongoing Black Lives Matter protests, Reni Eddo-Lodge is the first Black British author to take the number-one spot on the UK's official charts with her book 'Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race'.

The Guardian reports that Reni Eddo-Lodge has become the first Black British author ever to take the number-one spot on the Nielsen BookScan's UK top 50 with her book Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race. The only other Black author to take the number-one spot in the charts' history was Former US First Lady Michelle Obama for her memoir Becoming. The news comes at a time when Black Lives Matter protests, which began a few weeks ago in America, have spread to several other countries across the world as conversations around police brutality and systemic racism take centre stage.


READ: African Writers Show Solidarity with Protesting Americans in Open Letter

The award-winning Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race, which was first published in 2018, was Eddo-Lodge's elaboration on why she was choosing to no longer engage with "the vast majority" of white people on race because of their "[refusal] to accept the legitimacy of structural racism and its symptoms".

Responding tot he news on social media, Eddo-Lodge wrote, "Feels absolutely wild to have broken this record," she wrote. "My work stands on the shoulders of so many black British literary giants - Bernadine Evaristo, Benjamin Zephaniah, Zadie Smith, Andrea Levy, Stella Dadzie, Stuart Hall, Linton K Johnson, Jackie Kay, Gary Younge - to name a few." She also added that, "Can't help but be dismayed by this - the tragic circumstances in which this achievement came about. The fact that it's 2020 and I'm the first."

Her sentiment speaks to longstanding conversation about how Black people continue to make history in various spaces as "the first Black"––it's 2020 for crying out loud. As if that weren't bad enough, these so-called historical moments do not prevent white people from continuing with the endless erasure of Black people's contributions.

Case in point, British-Nigerian author Bernadine Evaristo became the first Black woman to win the prestigious Booker Prize in October of last year but even then, she had to share the award with Canadian author Margaret Atwood in a decision described by the judges as "explicitly flouting the rules". Not long after that "historical" moment, Evaristo was referred to as just "another author" in a BBC news segment covering the 2019 Booker Prize.

While Eddo-Lodge's accomplishment remains just that, it speaks to how far society needs to go as it pertains to consistently recognising and acknowledging the work of Black people.

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The 10 Best HHP Songs Ranked

On the second anniversary of HHP's passing, we rank 10 of the South African hip-hop legend's best songs.

Jabulani Tsambo, popularly known by his alias HHP, was a pivotal part of South African hip-hop. Renowned for trailblazing the motswako sub-genre in the early 2000s, the rapper sadly passed away on October 24th, 2018 after a long and much publicised bout with depression.

During his active years, which span two decades (from 1997 to 2018), he was instrumental in breaking barriers and bridging the gap between kwaito and hip-hop in SA, from the late 90s to early 2000s.

He became a household name in the 2000s as he spearheaded the motswako movement, propelling it to the mainstream and solidifying his legendary status in the process.

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