In Poet Lore's Spring/Summer 2017 feature World Poets in Translation, Hodna Nuernberg translates Togolese poet Anas Atakora. Nuernberg introduces the poet, "Atakora writes in a French that is simultaneously limpid and roiled by the undercurrents of Kotokoli, his mother tongue. . . Atakora's genius lies in his ability to draw inspiration from this duality, creating a poetic voice that plays with oppositions as he develops a personal lyricism rich with polyphony and intertextuality."
Nuernberg goes on to explain, "Atakora considers himself to be among the third generation of Francophone Togolese poets, tracing his lineage back to the neo-Négritude writers of the 1960s and 70s. The content-driven and politically engaged writing that characterized the work of the neo-Négritude writers is tempered in Atakora's work by his interest in stylistic invention and by his commitment to liberating poetic language from formal constraints, a sensibility he shares with writers of the second generation, who came of age during the cultural renewal of the 1990s."
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