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Watch Bernadine Evaristo Talk About Womanhood and Othering on 'BBC: Focus on Africa'

The 2019 Booker Prize winner speaks to BBC about her acclaimed book 'Girl, Woman, Other'.

Earlier this week, British-Nigerian author Bernadine Evaristo was awarded the prestigious Booker Prize for her book, Girl, Woman, Other. Although the Booker Prize forbids that the award be given to more than one individual, the committee reportedly felt that two novels were deserving of this year's prize. While Evaristo made history as the first ever Black woman to win the prize, many were not pleased that she had to share the prize with Canadian author, Margaret Atwood. Recently, in an interview with BBC: Focus on Africa, Evaristo spoke about womanhood, othering in terms of race, sexuality, class and immigration status.


Explaining why she chose to focus on othering in her book, Evaristo says that, "It's about womanhood. It's about the transition from womanhood to adulthood. And it's about the ways in which we are othered as women of color in certain societies, in the UK for example. She goes on to add that, "The women in the book are othered in terms of their sexuality because there are characters on the queer spectrum in the book...they're a diverse group of women. There's no sort of homogeneity among them at all."

While Girl, Woman, Other is Evaristo's eighth book, this is the first time her work has been seriously considered for the prize. The interviewer asks her what she feels needs to be done further in the publishing world to ensure that the stories of Black women writers are recognized and talked about much more. Evaristo responds by saying that the issue is with the publishing industry and who gets to become a publisher in what is a admittedly a White industry.

Towards the end of the interview, Evaristo speaks about the brilliance of the current crop of African authors and the importance of the Caine Prize for African Fiction.

READ: Nigerian Writer Lesley Nneka Arimah is the 2019 Winner of the Prestigious Caine Prize

Watch the full interview below:

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(Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

British-Nigerian Writer Bernardine Evaristo Wins Joint Booker Prize With Margaret Atwood

Evaristo is the first black woman to win the prize, but not everyone is pleased that she had to split the award.

History was made yesterday as the Booker Prize was awarded to British-Nigerian author Bernardine Evaristo for her novel "Girl, Woman, Other," beating out four others including fellow Nigerian Chigozie Obioma. It marked the first time the prestigious literary award was given to a black woman and only the second time it has been given to a Nigerian (Ben Okri in 1995 for "The Famished Road"). In another historical twist for the event, Evaristo shared the award with famous Canadian author Margaret Atwood for her novel "The Testaments," the long awaited sequel to fan-favorite "The Handmaid's Tale." This is the third time the award has been split in its 50 year history and Brittle Paper reports that the judges described the decision as "explicitly flouting" the rules.

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Sometimes taking care of our families 'back home' is more a burden than it is a privilege.

When I finished my final year of high school, I was anxious about how I would fund my studies at universities. Fortunately, I received a scholarship which would take care of all my financial needs. This was during the time when I had lost my father and my mother had moved back to my grandmother's house in Zimbabwe with my brothers because we had lost pretty much everything. Part of what excited me about the scholarship was that I'd be getting an allowance to do with as I pleased. It wasn't a lot of money, but it was certainly more than I'd had in years.

I'd had two pairs of shoes over the past few years and the prospect of not struggling so much anymore was both relieving and exciting. That was until my grandmother called me to the kitchen, and explained just how I would spend that money. "You will send half of it to your mother." She added that, "There is electricity to be paid and food to be bought here." It was not a request but rather an instruction. She went on to remind me of her words every day until I felt so burdened by them that I wished I had never received the scholarship in the first place. And that right there, is what we mean when we speak of "black tax".

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Best of the Decade: The Greatest South African Hip-Hop Songs of the 2010s

"Caracara" is easily the South African hip-hop song of the decade.

We asked several South African hip-hop heads, artists, writers and DJs to share their top five SA hip-hop songs of the decade. A majority of them included K.O's 2014 smash hit "Caracara," which features KiD X and is produced by the extremely talented Lunatik.

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Watch Bonang Matheba's Interview With The Breakfast Club

Bonang Matheba talks about her career, misconceptions about Africa and making major moves in America.

South African television personality and entrepreneur Bonang Matheba is currently in New York after recently receiving the "E! African Influencer" of the Year award in Santa Monica, California. She stopped by Power 105.1 for an interview with DJ Envy and Charlamagne Tha God on The Breakfast Club.

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