A multi-layered narrative comprising a series of interwoven short stories and poetic texts which can be read within continental Africa, the African Diaspora and beyond. Tadjo imagines an African society on the brink of total collapse yet there is no doubt that the story resonates in unsettling ways with recent political and social unrest in Côte d’Ivoire. This is a narrative of devastating ideographic power from one of the most important voices in African writing today.
Véronique Tadjo (born 1955) is a writer, poet, novelist, and artist from Côte d’Ivoire. Having lived and worked in many countries within the African continent and diaspora, she feels herself to be pan-African, in a way that is reflected in the subject matter, imagery and allusions of her work.
Born in Paris, Véronique Tadjo was the daughter of an Ivorian civil servant and a French painter and sculptor. Brought up in Abidjan, she travelled widely with her family.
Tadjo completed her BA degree at the University of Abidjan and her doctorate at the Sorbonne in African-American Literature and Civilization. In 1983, she went to Howard University in Washington, D.C., on a Fulbright research scholarship.
In 1979, Tadjo chose to teach English at the Lycée Moderne de Korhogo (secondary school) in the North of Côte d’Ivoire. She subsequently became a lecturer at the English department of the University of Abidjan until 1993.
In the past few years, she has facilitated workshops in writing and illustrating children’s books in Mali, Benin, Chad, Haiti, Mauritius, French Guyana, Burundi, Rwanda and South Africa. In 2006 she participated in the fall residency of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa.
She has lived in Paris, Lagos, Mexico City, Nairobi and London. Tadjo is currently based in Johannesburg, where since 2007 she has been head of French Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand.
Tadjo received the Literary Prize of L’Agence de Cooperation Culturelle et Technique in 1983 and the UNICEF Prize in 1993 for Mamy Wata and the Monster, which was also chosen as one of Africa’s 100 Best Books of the 20th Century, one of only four children’s books selected. In 2005, Tadjo won the Grand prix littéraire d’Afrique noire.
You can find her books at Amazon