Innocent Chizaram Ilo Crowned 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Winner for Africa

23-year-old Innocent Chizaram Ilo from Nigeria is the regional winner for Africa of the 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Prize for their short story “When a Woman Renounces Motherhood.” He becomes the youngest-ever writer to be awarded the Africa region prize.  Ilo follows Zambia’s Mbozi Haimbe who won the Africa region prize last year for her short

While We Were Away…

If you were an ardent fan of My Literature Lesson, you probably noticed that the site was down for an extensive period – a little over 18 months to be exact. Well, let’s just say sh*t happens 🙁 In December 2018, our hosting service provider suffered a technical glitch that led to the loss of

Henrik Ibsen Returns in New List of Set Books

The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development has released the new set of compulsory texts for KCSE 2019-2022. The new list affects the books that were not affected in last year’s revision. The affected books in English are; ‘The River and the Source’, ‘The Caucasian Chalk Circle’ and ‘Betrayal in the City’. In Kiswahili, the only

Introducing Ole Kulet’s ‘Blossoms of the Savannah’

Blossoms of the Savannah follows a family of four – a father, mother and two daughters in their late teens – who, after many years in the bustling town centre of Nakuru in the Midwest of Kenya, have to relocate to their ancestral area because the father and family breadwinner has been retrenched from his

Meet, 70 year-old Maa Icon, Henry Ole Kulet

In 1967, a young Maasai man clad in a red shuka walked from Enabelibel in Narok District to Nakuru town to meet a Mr Griffin, then the Agricultural Officer in charge of Rift Valley Province. He immediately offered him a job as an assistant manager, Kenya Farmers Association, Kericho branch. This short anecdote best captures

Blogger Cyprian Nyakundi Wants Kiswahili Anthology Withdrawn

Popular blogger Cyprian Nyakundi has written to the Cabinet Secretary for Education Dr. Fred Matiang’i asking for the withdrawal of the newly introduced Kiswahili anthology of short stories – Tumbo Lisiloshiba na Hadithi Nyingine – on grounds that it is written by only two authors. The petition also takes issue with fact that its editors,

‘New’ Set Texts for 2017 (Update)

The Ministry of Education and KICD may be set to introduce a list of ‘new’ set texts for 2017. The list contains both current titles and some new ones in both English and Kiswahili. Some texts such as The River and the Source, The Caucasian Chalk Circle, Betrayal in the City and Kidagaa Kimemwozea have

Best Romantic Novels Every Teenager Should be Reading

In My Literature Lesson today, I want to look at some of the best romantic novels for teenagers out there. The December holiday is here with us, no school does not mean no reading. Right? Let’s face it; if you have teenagers, the debate over what they should be reading is almost a lost cause.

Changing Times in ‘The River and the Source’

My literature lesson today looks at ‘change’ and its influence on the plot and the characters in the novel. To begin with, we need to bear in mind that ‘change’ refers to a situation that becomes different from the previous. Change begins, in this society, when Akoko’s father breaks tradition by asking for thirty head