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Sister strength: Yari Yari Pamberi at NYU on October 12-16 will draw black women writers from all over the globe.

Where can you hear Maya Angelou, Toni Mordson, Alice Walker and Sonja Sanchez, plus Buchi Emecheta, Ama Ata Aidoo, Maryse Conde and Nawal el Saadawi in just a few days?

Yari Yari Pamberi, of course. Yari Yari Pamberi: Black Women Writers Dissecting Globalization is the second major conference put together by the Organization of Women Writers of Africa (OWWA). The conference is scheduled for October 12-16, 2004, at New York University and other venues in New York. OWWA planned the conference with New York University's Institute of African American Affairs and Africana (IAAA) Studies Program. The conference promises to be more than a series of book signings, but most of all, a rare opportunity to engage with a range of black women writers from throughout the African Diaspora.

"Yari Yari" is taken from the Kuranko language of Sierra Leone and means "the future." "Pamberi" comes from the Shona language of Zimbabwe and means forward.

The writers, artists and academics will address how globalization affects African women's lives and literature in the United States, the Caribbean, Latin America, Africa and Europe. "The psychological and physiological consequences of globalization have been a major part of the subject matter of the contemporary African writer," says Jayne Cortez, a poet and president of OWWA. "In relation to Africa and African culture, the international slave trade and colonialism forced significant contact with globalization in its early manifestations."

Yari Yari will examine globalization from a cultural and female perspective with panels, conversations and presentations by novelists, poets, playwrights, critics, filmmakers, scholars and organizers. The program will also include readings, a film and video festival, concerts and exhibitions. An awards dinner will be chaired by Susan L. Taylor and Diane Weathers, editorial director and editor-in-chief respectively of Essence magazine. The events will be Webcast via OWWA and IAAA Web sites.

The first Yari Yari conference, in 1997, focused on "Black Women Writers and the Future." One hundred and twenty writers from around the world participated in the first event and more than 5,000 people attended. In her poem about the first conference, Cortez riffs on the range of languages, experiences and perspectives and struggles the women represented in 1997. She writes, "Yari Yari is an optimistic approach to the struggle."

"Black women writers from around the globe have been struggling against recism, exploitation, gender oppression and other human rights violations," Cortez said., "What they want is to participate in global decisions concerning survival and the future of humanity. They need access to the progress of globalization. That's what this conference aims to do."

For additional information, contact Laura Rice at 212-998-2134 or of visit
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Title Annotation:Between the lines: the inside scoop on what's happening in the publishing industry
Author:Davis, Bernadette Adams
Publication:Black Issues Book Review
Date:Sep 1, 2004
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