In the rapidly growing field of African literature in French, writing by women has largely been ignored. This book, the first comprehensive study of women's writing in francophone sub-Saharan Africa, redressess the critical imbalance and celebrates the originality of this fascinating new literature. Considering questions of genre and ideology, the author highlights the tension between the individualistic act of writing and the collective tradition of African society - a tension which emerges as the key to each of the texts discussed. Focusing on four major authors - Mariama Ba, Aminata Sow Fall, Werewere Liking and Calixthe Beyala, each with an international reputation - the book uses a feminist approach to consider the duality of the African woman, who is often torn between modernity and tradition. This duality, the author suggests, is reconfigured through fictional writings which provide a space for alternative female subjectivities to emerge.
Nicki Hitchcott Lecturer in French,University of Nottingham