2021

News

How can children books help in raising confident kids? – Lessons from Festival Saint-Petersburg Book Lighthouse

Christian Elongué gave a public talk on the topic “Who is the true alpha of the family?”, during the festival “Saint-Petersburg Book Lighthouse” moderated by Nadezhda Filimonova and Evgeniia Trofimova from the Kronshtadt children’s library in Russia. Elongué thus explained that parenting styles must be adapted and personnalised to the kids and teens personality. There is no one right way to raise a child. It’s important to focus on balancing priorities, juggling responsibilities and quickly flipping between the needs of children, other family members and yourself.

Review

Children’s Book Review: Africa, Amazing Africa

Atinuke’s first non-fiction title is a major publishing event: a celebration of all 55 countries on the African continent! Her beautifully-written text captures Africa’s unique mix of the modern and the traditional, as she explores its geography, its peoples, its animals, its history, its resources and its cultural diversity. The book divides Africa into five sections: South, East, West, Central and North, each with its own introduction. This is followed by a page per country, containing a delightful mix of friendly, informative text and colourful illustrations.

Muna Kalati

How did Muna Kalati start ? – Conversation with the founder

It was at university with the pan-African associative movements and my Master’s degree in “Africa and Globalization” that I discovered the rich African past and became aware of my cultural alienation. I knew more about the history of France, Great Britain and Belgium than that of Cameroon and I realized that the books of my childhood had largely contributed to it. I realized that children’s and youth literature was a powerful tool for building the imagination and identity of young Africans, for reducing illegal immigration and low civic and patriotic awareness. But I realized with regret that African children’s books were little known and accessible. The authors of books for adults were more publicized, celebrated and promoted than those of children’s literature, which was considered a marginal field, a ghetto or a sector of little interest reserved for amateur authors.

Muna Kalati

Muna Kalati advocated for more diversity in global children literature at IBBY Russia 2021

From the 9th to 12 September 2021, Muna Kalati was represented through its Director Christian Elongué at the 37th Ibby Children’s Book International Congress In Moscow, under the theme «Great Big World Through Children’s Books: National and Foreign Literature — Role, Value, Impact on Young Readers in Different Countries». It was an opportunity to explore diversity of themes, characters, issues in children’s literature of the world, to discuss cultural variety which doesn’t prevent them from interweaving and interacting.

Muna Kalati

Overcoming the translation challenges in African language publishing for children

Translation is a way of increasing the amount of reading material for African children.

‘If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart’. – Nelson Mandela

Translation is an act of re-creation, sharing and reciprocal development between readers and writers of different languages. The potential of translation to greatly increase output with minimal effort is clear. Not all, however, feel comfortable with the use of translation as a way of increasing the amount of reading material for African children.

Muna Kalati

The need of writing and publishing children books in indigenous African languages

The growing interest in bilingual education in sub-Saharan Africa has highlighted an urgent need for reading material in African languages. Increasingly, parents and educators, conscious of the strategic value of indigenous language on identity construction, encourage or educate children to know and speak at least one local languages. However, parents are usually faced with many challenges whenever they attempt to find bilingual books in their local languages.

Muna Kalati

USD 200,000 for the 2021 Africa Publishing Innovation Fund (APIF)

The International Publishers Association (IPA) is accepting proposals for projects to develop reading culture beyond the classroom in Africa, with grants from the USD 200,000 Africa Publishing Innovation Fund (APIF) on offer to the best ideas. The 2022 APIF theme of cultivating reading culture is intentionally broad to attract a wide range of innovations. Examples could be developing the publishing value chain (authors, illustrators, translators, literary agents, booksellers, distributors etc.) or increasing access to books, such as through public libraries.