Ngugi wa Thiong’o cancels attendance because of Nya Tider, but organisers says ‘dialogue is best way to beat racism and xenophobia’

Kenyan literary icon Ngugi wa Thiong’o, often tipped for the Nobel literature prize, has pulled out of an annual Swedish book fair in protest at the presence of a right-wing extremist newspaper, his publisher said Wednesday.

The 75-year-old author of A Grain of Wheat (1967) and Petals of Blood (1975), wrote an email to his Swedish publisher Modernista informing them he would cancel his attendance at the Gothenburg Book Fair “in solidarity with the writers withdrawing and of course with the concerns behind their withdrawal,” referring to the newspaper Nya Tider, which will be represented at the fair.

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