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From “Willing Hands” to “Rivers of Blood”

“There were strikes, there was unemployment and the usual balance of payments deficit. But Enoch Powell implied that most of these troubles were caused by blacks. They all should be sent home, he cried, forgetting that only a few years back he had welcomed the black nurses from the West Indies with near hysterical enthusiasm. Those workers from Africa and the West Indies had been referred to as “willing hands”. The press said black people had fought gallantly to help save the mother country during the Second World War, and now they were here to help rebuild her industries. Everybody wanted the black people then. As most of the ravages of war had by now been repaired, the willing hands became the root cause of all the British ills. In Enoch Powell’s vision, they were going to cause blood to run in the streets.”

Buchi Emecheta – Head Above Water, Chapter 7


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Launch of Buchi Emecheta’s Book in Lagos 9th May


This free event is open to all who wish to learn more about the late novelist. It will feature –

Tributes to Buchi Emecheta
A short film of her life
Readings from her works
A panel conversation and discussion on her influence and her legacy…


Plus – an opportunity to view and obtain her new books


Though Buchi, who died in January 2017, was an internationally renowned figure, her books have been out of print in Nigeria for many years.  This book-launch aims to ensure that quality imprints of her works are now available in Nigeria in affordable and accessible formats.

Six titles are currently available in the new memorial edition – published by Omenala Press, the covers designed by the artist Victor Ehikhamenor.
A further four titles are scheduled to appear in the autumn.


Jelili Adebisi Omotola Hall (Formerly Multipurpose Hall),

University of Lagos,

Akoka, Yaba,


Nigeria International Book Fair :

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Comeback mother exhibition at Goldsmiths

Comeback mother, Goldsmiths
Halima Haruna and Jessa Mockridge
Performing the Archive
Jessa Mockridge, Althea Greenan, Elizabeth Williams (right)
In The Ditch – Manuscript
“The Black Story teller” – fragment from one of Buchi’s Notebooks
Lydia Levy and Angelique Golding
Lydia Levy and Angelique Golding
Irenosen Okojie

Sylvester Onwordi
Sylvester Onwordi

Comeback Mother - Buchi Emecheta

Dr Elizabeth Williams
Buchi Emecheta Archive
Fragments from the Buchi Archives 

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Omenala Press

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Buchi Emecheta – the ‘Comeback’ Mother Goldsmiths Exhibition, 10 -27 April

This showing is in fragments and centers on Buchi Emecheta’s personal archive: books, manuscripts, plays, personal letters, publishers letters, notebooks, ephemera, essays, newspapers and unpublished material.

The exhibition comback mother: Buchi Emecheta will be installed durationally in parts unfolding between Thursday 5 April and Thursday 19 April.

Please join us for a mid-way reception on Tuesday 10 April 5-8pm. Irenosen Okojie will read Gunk and Vegas from her collection, Speak Gigantular.

comeback mother: Buchi Emecheta is co-organised by Halima Haruna and Jessa Mockridge in collaboration with Buchi Emecheta Foundation, Goldsmiths Library and supported by Goldsmiths Alumni & Friends Fund. With a very big thanks for all kinds of shaping, support and care from Sylvester Onwordi, Nadine Plummer, Angelique Golding, Althea Greenan and Laura Elliott.

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Fête de Buchi in Lagos

On Saturday, April 7, 2018, The Book Banque, in partnership with Angels & Muse, will host ‘La Fête de Buchi‘ — a book meet in celebration of Buchi Emecheta‘s legacy. Alongside conversations about Buchi‘s prolific writing, there will be healthy discussions on feminism, traditional rites and other themes that transcend the author’s work.

Attendees will also get a chance to purchase new reprints of 6 of her novels designed by Victor Ehikhamenor — who also designed our host space, Angels & Muse. What’s more?

  • Pop up with work by female (African) authors;
  • Nibbles and palm wine;
  • Great networking opportunity!

“Black [wo]men all over the world should re-unite and re-examine the way history has portrayed us.

— Buchi Emecheta

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9th May – Omenala Press Book Launch at Nigeria International Book Fair

On Wednesday 9th May at the Nigeria International Book Fair (NIBF) Omenala Press will launch the new edition of Buchi Emecheta’s books in Nigeria.

The Launch will feature a discussion by a guest panel on the legacy of Buchi Emecheta, followed by an opportunity for questions from the audience.   The afternoon will also include a series of short tributes, a documentary film of the life of Buchi Emecheta, and a competition in which audience members will have the chance to win a copy of one of her books.


For more information visit the website –

Nigeria International Book Fair -Lagos, May 7th-12th, 2018