Nigerian, Tope Folarin, Wins The Caine Prize

Nigerian, Tope Folarin, Wins The Caine Prize

Tope Folarin

Nigeria’s Tope Folarin has won the 2013 Caine Prize for African Writing, described as Africa’s leading literary award, for his short story entitled ‘Miracle’ from Transition, Issue 109 (Bloomington, 2012).

The Chair of Judges, Gus Casely-Hayford, announced Tope Folarin as the winner of the £10,000 prize at a dinner held this evening (Monday, 8 July) at the Bodleian Library in Oxford.

‘Miracle’ is a story set in Texas in an evangelical Nigerian church where the congregation has gathered to witness the healing powers of a blind pastor-prophet. Religion and the gullibility of those caught in the deceit that sometimes comes with faith rise to the surface as a young boy volunteers to be healed and begins to believe in miracles.
Gus Casely-Hayford praised the story, saying: ‘Tope Folarin’s ‘Miracle’ is another superb Caine Prize winner – a delightful and beautifully paced narrative, that is exquisitely observed and utterly compelling’.

Tope Folarin is the recipient of writing fellowships from the Institute for Policy Studies and Callaloo, and he serves on the board of the Hurston/Wright Foundation. Tope was educated at Morehouse College, and the University of Oxford, where he earned two Master’s degrees as a Rhodes Scholar. He lives and works in Washington, DC.
Also shortlisted were:
· Pede Hollist (Sierra Leone) ‘Foreign Aid’ from Journal of Progressive Human Services, Vol. 23.3 (Philadelphia, 2012)

· Abubakar Adam Ibrahim (Nigeria) ‘The Whispering Trees’ from The Whispering Trees, published by Parrésia Publishers (Lagos, 2012)

· Elnathan John (Nigeria) ‘Bayan Layi’ from Per Contra, Issue 25 (USA, 2012)

· Chinelo Okparanta (Nigeria) ‘America’ from Granta, Issue 118 (London, 2012)

11 thoughts on “Nigerian, Tope Folarin, Wins The Caine Prize” by Admin (@ogaoga)

  1. Congratulation to TF! I actually love Elnathan’s piece.

  2. For me, I think the one thing that stood Miracle above the rest is the subtle infusion of humour. While reading about this seemingly disturbing trend of people hanging all their hopes on the words of a man of God, one still gets to laugh at the antics, mannerisms and words of the characters. It’s a story one can read to relieve stress. To me, that’s the selling point of the story. So, it’s congrats to Tope Folarin.

  3. congrats, bro.

  4. Nigeria again. Good one.

  5. Congrats…. though this victory doesn’t seem Nigerian

  6. I read the story yesterday and it stayed with me long after I dropped my tab. Simple yet sharp lines. Humour that somehow smothered the overwhelming feeling of sadness. A story to chew on. Left a bittersweet taste in my mouth though

  7. I am going to go read it. Congrats to Tope Folarin.

    I do hope however, that one day a Caine prize is won by a Nigerian, born, bred, raised in Nigeria, with Nigerian certificates, schooled here, etc. Then we could truly celebrate. Till then, I guess we should all keep horning our skills and getting better.
    (Unless of course there is such a person.)

  8. @ibagare, what about the 2010 winner, Stickfighting Days by Olufemi. U got the story? I need that story.

  9. @Ibagere….I mean. Reminds me of Richard Gere

  10. Elnathan John’s Bayan Layi seems to be an echo of some of the stories in Akpan Uwem’s ‘Say You Are One Of Them’

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