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Will training AI to be more “African” undermine our literary ownership?

Will training AI to be more “African” undermine our literary ownership?

RECENT pushback by Singaporean writers against state efforts to use their work for AI training has cast the spotlight on a similar conundrum in Africa. As efforts to imbue Large Language Models (LLMs) with a deeper understanding of African perspectives and narratives gain traction, the African literary community stands at a crossroads. Will they protect their intellectual property like their Singaporean counterparts, or seize the opportunity to influence the burgeoning field of AI? Is it possible to do both? Africa boasts a vibrant literary tradition that has significantly influenced global literary circles. Prominent African writers such as Chinua Achebe, Wole…
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From Chinua Achebe to Toyin Falola – 5 essential books Nigeria’s new president should read

From Chinua Achebe to Toyin Falola – 5 essential books Nigeria’s new president should read

NOT many African political leaders are known to have publicly declared their love of reading. US President Barack Obama popularised the idea of a recommended reading list and he still shares his annual choice. Author OLAYINKA OYEGBILE, Journalist and Communications scholar, Trinity University, Lagos As a communications scholar and a book reviewer, I made a short list of essential reads for Nigeria’s new president. My selection of books is based on what a new president needs to know when he takes the reins of a deeply divided and disillusioned country. Nigeria has many problems. Disunity deepened under the Muhammadu Buhari…
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In conversation with award-winning Nigerian author and director of Ake festival Lola Shoneyin

In conversation with award-winning Nigerian author and director of Ake festival Lola Shoneyin

BONFACE ORUCHO, BIRD STORY AGENCY. AFRICA is ethnically and culturally diverse. The nature of art and literary works from the continent are equally varied. African writers like Chinua Achebe, Chimamanda Ngozi, Alain Mabanckou, and Bessie Head, among many others, have elevated African arts to the global space. Still, there is a need to sustain the momentum. Lola Shoneyin, a poet, novelist, publisher, bookseller and festival organiser, is one of the few dedicated to ensuring African literature and art get better recognition and appreciation. When the 48-year-old published her debut novel ‘The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives, in 2010, she…
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