Sat. Apr 20th, 2024

Maryse Condé, the French-Guadeloupean author, who wrote about slavery, colonialism, sexuality and African dictatorships in more than 20 novels, plays and essays, has died aged 90.

Born Maryse Boucolon in the Pointe-à-Pitre in the 1930s, she went on to marry the Guinean actor Mamadou Condé and moved to his home country, then to Ghana, Mali and Senegal.

Among her most celebrated novels are Ségu and Hérémakhonon – which means “Waiting for Happiness” in the west African Malinke language.

The latter novel follows a Paris-educated Guadeloupean woman, who realises that her struggle to locate her identity is an inner journey, rather than a geographical one.

Ms Condé was awarded France’s Legion of Honour in 2004. She also won an alternative to the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2018, when the Swedish academy award was halted over a rape scandal.

By Joy

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