The shortlist for the 2011 Caine Prize for African Writing is out. Five authors – Tim Keegan and David Medalie from South Africa, Lauri Kubuitsile from Botswana, Beatrice Lamwaka from Uganda, and NoViolet Bulawayo from Zimbabwe – will compete to win the prize, widely known as the ‘African Booker’.
The prize, now in its twelfth year, is regarded as Africa’s leading literary award and comes with a £10,000 prize. The winner will be announced at a special event on July 11, 2011.
Award winning Libyan novelist Hisham Matar, who chaired the selection panel said, “Choosing a shortlist out of nearly 130 entries was not an easy task – one made more difficult and yet more enjoyable by the varied tastes of the judges – but we have arrived at a list of five stories that excel in quality and ambition. Together they represent a portrait of today’s African short story: its wit and intelligence, its concerns and preoccupations.”
Below are the five shortlisted titles selected from 126 entries representing 17 African countries:
- Hitting Budapest (by NoViolet Bulawayo) from ‘The Boston Review’ Vol 35, no. 6 – Nov/Dec 2010
- Butterfly dreams (by Beatrice Lamwaka) ‘’ from ‘Butterfly Dreams and Other New Short Stories from Uganda’ published by Critical, Cultural and Communications Press, Nottingham, 2010
- What Molly Knew (by Tim Keegan) from ‘Bad Company’ published by Pan Macmillan SA, 2008
- In the spirit of McPhineas Lata (by Lauri Kubuitsile) from ‘The Bed Book of Short Stories’ published by Modjaji Books, SA, 2010
- The Mistress’s Dog (by David Medalie) from ‘The Mistress’s Dog: Short stories 1996-2010’ published by Picador Africa, 2010.
The Caine Prize, awarded annually for African creative writing, is named after the late Sir Michael Caine, former Chairman of Booker plc and Chairman of the Booker Prize management committee for nearly 25 years. The Prize is awarded for a short story by an African writer published in English (indicative length 3,000 to 10,000 words).
For more about previous Caine Prize winners and other literary award winners from Africa, click here.