Bloggers' Club

  • If you write well in English and have strong opinions please CLICK HERE to blog at Up Station Mountain Club.

Search this Site

June 2023

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30  

Jimbi Media Sites

  • AFRICAphonie
    AFRICAphonie is a Pan African Association which operates on the premise that AFRICA can only be what AFRICANS and their friends want AFRICA to be.
  • Jacob Nguni
    Virtuoso guitarist, writer and humorist. Former lead guitarist of Rocafil, led by Prince Nico Mbarga.
  • Postwatch Magazine
    A UMI (United Media Incorporated) publication. Specializing in well researched investigative reports, it focuses on the Cameroonian scene, particular issues of interest to the former British Southern Cameroons.
  • Bernard Fonlon
    Dr Bernard Fonlon was an extraordinary figure who left a large footprint in Cameroonian intellectual, social and political life.
  • George Ngwane: Public Intellectual
    George Ngwane is a prominent author, activist and intellectual.
  • PostNewsLine
    PostNewsLine is an interactive feature of 'The Post', an important newspaper published out of Buea, Cameroons.
  • France Watcher
    Purpose of this advocacy site: To aggregate all available information about French terror, exploitation and manipulation of Africa
  • Bakwerirama
    Spotlight on the Bakweri Society and Culture. The Bakweri are an indigenous African nation.
  • Simon Mol
    Cameroonian poet, writer, journalist and Human Rights activist living in Warsaw, Poland
  • Bate Besong
    Bate Besong, award-winning firebrand poet and playwright.
  • Fonlon-Nichols Award
    Website of the Literary Award established to honor the memory of BERNARD FONLON, the great Cameroonian teacher, writer, poet, and philosopher, who passionately defended human rights in an often oppressive political atmosphere.
  • Scribbles from the Den
    The award-winning blog of Dibussi Tande, Cameroon's leading blogger.
    Professor of Medicine and interventional cardiologist, Nowa Omoigui is also one of the foremost experts and scholars on the history of the Nigerian Military and the Nigerian Civil War. This site contains many of his writings and comments on military subjects and history.
  • Victor Mbarika ICT Weblog
    Victor Wacham Agwe Mbarika is one of Africa's foremost experts on Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Dr. Mbarika's research interests are in the areas of information infrastructure diffusion in developing countries and multimedia learning.
  • Martin Jumbam
    The refreshingly, unique, incisive and generally hilarous writings about the foibles of African society and politics by former Cameroon Life Magazine columnist Martin Jumbam.
  • Enanga's POV
    Rosemary Ekosso, a Cameroonian novelist and blogger who lives and works in Cambodia.
  • Godfrey Tangwa aka Rotcod Gobata
    Renaissance man, philosophy professor, actor and newspaper columnist, Godfrey Tangwa aka Rotcod Gobata touches a wide array of subjects. Always entertaining and eminently readable. Visit for frequent updates.
  • Francis Nyamnjoh
    Francis B. Nyamnjoh is Associate Professor and Head of Publications and Dissemination with the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA).
  • Ilongo Sphere
    Novelist and poet Ilongo Fritz Ngalle, long concealed his artist's wings behind the firm exterior of a University administrator and guidance counsellor. No longer. Enjoy his unique poems and glimpses of upcoming novels and short stories.

  • Up Station Mountain Club
    A no holds barred group blog for all things Cameroonian. "Man no run!"
Start Geesee CHAT
Start Geesee CHAT

Up Station Mountain Club Newsfeed

Conception & Design

  • Jimbi Media

  • domainad1

« Cameroonian killed in one-car wreck near Katy, Texas | Main | Poems by Hope Kale Ewusi »

Tuesday, 23 March 2010


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Now, that's my kind of girl! It reminds me of Bole Butake's 1992 "I refused to be Lapiroed" which made him a marked man in the eyes of the Biya regime

The Entrepreneur Newsonline Inc.

She is a true patriot that posterity will judge kindly. More importantly, she will be warmly remembered by her contemporaries who attempt to build a prosperous state that all will reap from even in the twilight years. Thats our warior...with her pen being her AK-47 for the good of the Homeland!



Dark Heart of the Night (French Voices) (Paperback)
~ Leonora Miano (Author), Editions Plon (Author), Tamsin Black (Translator), Terese Svoboda (Introduction)

From Publishers Weekly

Leaden prose and unimaginative detail weigh down this straightforward story of ritualistic atrocity in a fictionalized Cameroon. As a young woman, Ayané, the daughter of parents ostracized from their impoverished village, returns home for a visit from France just as a rebel army occupies the village. There, in the name of national unity, Isilo, the drug-addled rebel commander, has a village elder murdered, humiliates the men, and presses the children into his army. The atrocity bottoms out when he forces the villagers to eat the flesh of one of their own. Miano's plot has the makings of a rich morality tale, but the surprises are trotted out with the plodding pomp of a coronation. The story's effectiveness is also hindered by a cast of thinly drawn characters whose familiarity fails to add needed depth. Though there are occasional stretches that show Miano as a writer of talent, this first novel is marked more by its good intentions than its literary quality. (Apr.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review: Praise for the original French edition

(L'Interieur de la nuit) of Dark Heart of the Night: "[Miano] has written a novel that has the powerful dignity of the Greek tragedies." Thierry Gandillot, L'Express "In a style that is beautifully controlled and shows no trace of exoticism, Leonora Miano plunges her readers agonizingly into the mysteries of Africa: rebellions, coups d'etat, archaic sacrifices, and battles between clans. Her observations are merciless and uncompromising." Josyane Savigneau, Le Monde des Livres "Avoiding the fine talking of humanitarians and self-satisfied claptrap of nationalist Africans, [Miano] takes readers on an unforgettable journey to the heart of the shadows."

Marie Claire

Louis Egbe Mbua

I am not sure what this is all about as one has not read Miano's book. However, Miano has to be careful next time with selling her copyright. Some copyright clauses hand over the entire rights to the publisher who may use the material as they see fit. If that was what Miano signed for, then I'm afraid she has very little to argue about, legally, apart from challenging the contents of the translation in public.

Furthermore, translations can be subjective: I remember Mungo Beti's Mission Termine in French being translated as Mission to Kala in English. So, Miano might have written in coded proverbial French. But the translator of her book might have translated it in real terms as he/she may have thought reflected the actual contents of the book; and Miano's intentions. Now, one important question is this: Why did Miano not draft the service of the University of Buea School of Translation to translate her book? The only problem here is that she had already sold her copyright.


I'm surprised that the translator didn't work with her during the translation process... I wonder how much the translator knows about the culture reflected in the book she was translating... or if she made a trip to Cameroon or 'Equatorial Africa' just to get a feel of the 'darkness'... I suppose that her editing suite was so lit and comfortable, she simply watched a few Hollywood movies, flicked off the remote control, and was on the message...

Now, given that translators usually take a 'better' percent of the copyright royalties of any literary work they translate...

As you rightly point out, if the original author signed a contract which is legally binding, and handed over the translation rights and a whole lot of other rights to the publisher, then the fight can only be a media one.

Knowing that any media fight would only booster the sales of the English translation, and given that the translator has the upper hand in the royalties, that leaves us in a double bind - If there's any pidgin saying that I dread to think of, its "Monkey wok, baboon chop!"

You're right, if these baboons were our own home grown sisters and brothers at ASTI at least, the writer would not mind counting "the crumbs that fall under the table". That would be her own little contribution to national development...

But these are all conjectures. She might have a tight case, and if she does, then, she'll be the baboon and the translator and publishers of the English edition will be the monkeys!. Then the ripe dollar bananas will come right home!

Miam! Miam!

Mukefor Dennis Besong Tambe

She is just a victim of her naivety or excitement in dealing with astute whites. Why did she sign away her right to supervise or approve the translation? This is a French-Speaking author contracting with an American educational institution. Why did she not use the services of an American lawyer for due diligence? Black Africans love paternalism - other enlightened peoples and races looking after our interests in dealings that should proceed on an "arms-length" basis. Just like our ancestors of yesteryear who came to dealings with whites like sacrificial lambs and gave away human beings in exchange for beads and mirrors, we continue to make fools of ourselves. This woman should shut up for being extremely naive and stupid. She has no right to be noisy about her own turpitude. Education does not matter until such time as we become enlightened about how to protect our interests in a tough and competitive global village.
As governor, I will protect the interests of my province and Cameroon through due diligence involving taking legal advice in every contract I sign. Black Africans have to rise up in this world.


I agree with Miano we Africans are spending alot of precious time of ours seeking for recognition from an enimy who is determined to keep us in perpetual servitude.Oh God!! give use leaders in Africa that is just what we need to get over this self imposed slavery we'll not accept this as normal any more ,we pray Oh Lord for absolute emamcipation from our cruel enimy how long oh!! will we be dominated in our own land?Free us from the oppression of our enimies both within and without in JESUS name I pray amen.Please agree with me in this prayer.

Va Boy

There are three aspects to this, which should be evident to those with stereoscopic vision.

First. Very smart marketing from Ms Miano. Nothing brings attention to your book like making a big stink. She will end up outselling other Cameroonian writers. This is a great marketing stunt.

Second. Yes, she made a mistake by not negotiating using a lawyer, but lawyers are expensive and most of the time, these books make very little money. Retainer for a lawyer could easily be double the money she ever makes from her a book in the US. The publishers also have a take it or leave it attitude towards "unknown and untested" authors.

Third. Many writers, reviewers, journalists, TV shows take a paternalistic tone and frankly obnoxious tone towards Africans in the west. This is a teaching moment, which Ms Leonora exploits. Kudos.

Fourth (bonus). I do not agree with her that la republique is a kind of heaven on earth, except for chosen frogs and their excrement eating dogs such as entrepreneur online.

Exthil Wanki

Mr. Mukefor. This is not Miano's first novel. In fact, she has three other novels that were published in France and which have garnered her some very prestigious international awards. So even if there is a failure here, it is definitely not because of "excitement" for dealing with whites. She has been dealing with white publishers from over a decade and is one of the rare Cameroonian/African writers who actually make a living out of writing. so please spare us the patronizing rhetoric.

Probably the fact that the book was translated under the auspices of a long-standing program by the French government made her let her guard down:

"This work, published as part of a program providing publication assistance, received financial support from the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States and the French American Cultural Exchange."

In any case, it might come as a surprise to many that translators (who are considered as co-authors because of the new flavor that they add to the translated works) have lots of leeway from the title to the interpretation of the text. So Miano never had that much leeway in the first way. In fact, this translation earned the translator recogintion as:

"A French Voices selection of the PEN American Center and French Embassy for quality translation of important contemporary French literature."

Miano's problem is not that she was sidelined or did not have a lawyer but that she does not understand the translation proces, this being her first translated work.


Good analysis, Va Boy. For those who say Cameroon is heaven on earth, I think the answer lies in the cemeteries, hospitals, and in the streets. With the You-tube and satellite images, nothing is hidden anymore.

Heaven on earth? With that stench at Douala Airport? With the look at Lacqantinie? With all the Black Marias whose sirens upset our ears at day? What's she talking about when everyday I end my prayers that God should keep all Cameroonians in good health given the situation of medical health care in the country? How can she be living in Paris and calling Cameroon heaven on earth?

Yes, Ms Miano has taught us a good lesson on how to bring smart marketing to a work. I will put it to work as soon as my sister's first novel comes out next year. And I will scrutinize her book contract like a devil - every clause would be subject to weeks of reading.. you bet.

As for the paternalism of Western writers, reviewers, journalists, and tv shows, well, it depends on the writer, the image he or she creates - take Soyinka for example, the above group treat him with care, firstly from his looks... if you allow nitwits to outperform you, well, they will.

I did not appreciate Miano's comparison of France to the US, and bashing of the US. Just as Africa is not a country; the US is not a single state. And the US is not the US Federal Government. When you insult a country, without making specifications, you resort to essentializing a diversity of people most of whom are good people and a lot of whom are immigrants. I don't think most Cameroonians and Africans and her own family members and friends who have found sanctuary in the US will take her words kindly. Years down the line, that article she's written will come back to haunt her -particularly if she has to grow as a writer or academic. I do write negatively just as positively about our country, but not in blanket terms. Fairness is basic to all good writing.


Yes, Wanki, I did check the profile of the translator - she has about twenty-something books to her credit, with not less than twelve novels, poetry books, short story collections, translations, leaving out her anthologized work, or others that she's edited. When dealing with such a a writer, editor or translator, you need plenty of caution, particularly with understanding and signing the contract. It's your choice to sign it or to negotiate for changes. You can only blame yourself for whatever consequences that may come later.

It's easy to compare France and the US, but one thing worth knowing is that Americans (and by this I mean the middle and lower classes that do not depend on social security) work very hard, given the ruthlessness of capitalism in the country...

Va Boy

I tell you something though, peppersoup. This lady's generic antiamerican rant is cookie cutter French anti-americanism, taken off the shelf and served without any modification. Google french americanism, and you would find that it is served as a side dish with every 5 course meal to both children and adults. They just cannot abide that they are not numero un.


Va Boy, you put a broad smile on my face with your description and analysis above. If I were running a magazine, I would definitely commission you to do a feature essay on that! Perhaps you should contemplate an article on the same theme and style as above for Harper or New Yorker? Some magazine would grab it like a hot cake and there you go with S4000 dollars to post to your mum! Go, Va Boy! Fold up your sleeves and dissemble these tensions and how they manifest at the personal/social level! I guess it's a larger issue too with the Sasseu Nguessos and that francophonie ilk. Without the United States, and the Cameroonians living there, how will many families in Cameroon or elsewhere survive? Granted that there are geopolitical issues and global capitalism, but at the same time the US offers hope to a lot of people even as we struggle with the negative forces of capitalism.

Cheap Prada Bags

A lifetime of happiness!No man alive could bear it; it would be hell on erath.

The comments to this entry are closed.


AddThis Social Bookmark Button
Mobilise this Blog
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported