Matatu is a peer-reviewed journal on African literatures and societies dedicated to interdisciplinary dialogue between literary and cultural studies, historiography, the social sciences and cultural anthropology.
Matatu is animated by a lively interest in African culture and literature (including the Afro-Caribbean) that moves beyond worn-out clichés of “cultural authenticity” and “national liberation” towards critical exploration of African modernities. The East African public transport vehicle from which
Matatu takes its name is both a component and a symbol of these modernities: based on “Western” (these days usually "Asian") technology, it is a vigorously African institution; it is usually regarded with some anxiety by those travelling in it, but is often enough the only means of transport available; it creates temporary communicative communities and provides a transient site for the exchange of news, storytelling, and political debate.
Matatu is firmly committed to supporting democratic change in Africa, to providing a forum for interchanges between African and European critical debates, to overcoming notions of absolute cultural, ethnic, or religious alterity, and to promoting transnational discussion on the future of African societies in a wider world.
Matatu was published as book series until the end of 2015. All back volumes are still available
Articles for publication in MATATU should be sent to Christa Stevens at c.stevens [a t] brill.com
EastAfrica and then Madagascar. Malagasy is not an African language—it is in fact Austronesian, and its closest acknowledged linguistic relative is in this way in today’s Kalimantan, Indonesia. 41 In this way, just as there is no point in denying the power of colonial processes of creolisation, there
Tanzanian artist Eduardo Tingatinga (125) – he even met Tingatinga in Dar es Salaam in the 60s (126). He keeps painting murals in his home, including a Frida Kahlo one and one of his dead wife in Tingatinga style as a Shetani (a spirit in EastAfrican mythology). It could be argued that Neate’s novel