The New Social Environment#695

Balance of Stories

Featuring Emmanuel Iduma, Immaculata Abba, Ọlákìítán Adéolá, Yemisi Aribisala, Yinka Elujoba, Kemi Falodun, Sabo Kpade, Joseph Omoh Ndukwu, and Joshua Segun-Lean, with Megan Sungyoon


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Join the Rail’s November Critics Page contributors for a conversation with guest critic Emmanuel Iduma. We conclude with a poetry reading by Megan Sungyoon.

In this talk

Read the Brooklyn Rail’s November 2022 Critics Page →

Immaculata Abba

Photo of Immaculata Abba
Researcher, writer, and visual artist Immaculata Abba has written and photographed for international publications including Le Temps (Switzerland), The Guardian (UK), The Republic (NG) and African Arguments. With an academic background in history, literature and cultural theory, holds degrees from Queen Mary University of London and the University of Oxford. Abba is currently a research fellow with the Shared Heritage Africa project between DOCOMOMO International and Architectuul. Previous appointments include the inaugural freelance journalism fellowship at African Arguments (Royal African Society), a 2022 West African writer-in-residence at the Library of Africa and the African Diaspora, and more.

Ọlákìítán Adéolá

Ọlákìítán Adéolá is a trans*themme poet, experiential artist and curator working in spirals, reversals & tides.

Yemisi Aribisala

Photo of Yemisí Aríbisálà
Nigerian-born writer and painter Yemisi Aribisala is currently based in London. Her first book, Longthroat Memoirs: Soups Sex & Nigerian Tastebuds, used Nigerian food as a literary substrate to think about Nigeria’s culture and society. It won a Gourmand’s World Cookbook award, was shortlisted for the 2018 Art of Eating Prize and won the 2016 John Avery Prize at the Andre Simon Book Awards. Her writing explores various topics including feminism, Nigerian Christianity and identity and her essays on food are a lens through which the complex entity of Nigeria can be observed.

Yinka Elujoba

Photo of Yinka Elujoba
Yinka Elujoba is a Nigerian writer and critic living in New York. He is working on a novel about a boy and his mother—in response to Arshile Gorky’s The Artist with His Mother and writing art criticism for the New York Times.

Kemi Faldoun

Black and white photo of Kemi Falodun
Photo by Dirk Skiba
Kemi Falodun (b. 1993) is a Nigerian writer, journalist and editor exploring mental health, intergenerational complexities, social justice, and culture, especially photography and film. A finalist of Awele Creative Trust Short Story Prize (2016), Kemi was a Writer-in-Residence at Ebedi Writers Residency (2017) and has received fellowship from One World Media (2021). She participated in the Invisible Borders Trans-African Road Trip (Borders Within II) and text from her essay chapbook A Life in Transit (2019) has been exhibited in Lagos and New York. Kemi’s work has been published in Catapult, Al Jazeera, The Guardian UK, WePresent, and elsewhere. She’s currently an MFA student in fiction at the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan.

Sabo Kpade

Photo of Sabo Kpade
Writer, curator and journalist Sabo Kpade specializes in the arts and cultures of Africa and its diaspora in the UK, US and Europe. He graduated from Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) where he studied Global Arts and Cultures. Currently, Sabo writes for Contemporary & and Apple Music.

Joseph Omoh Ndukwu

Photo of Joseph Omoh Ndukwu
Joseph Omoh Ndukwu is a writer and editor. His work has been published in Guernica, the Prairie Schooner, A Long House, Off Assignment, and elsewhere. His essays on art have appeared in The Sole Adventurer, Contemporary And, Rele Gallery’s book of young contemporary artists New Directions, and in catalogues and journals. In 2021, he was selected for the Momus Emerging Critics Residency, and in 2022, he won the Virginia Faulkner Award. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria.

Joshua Segun-Lean

Photo of Joshua Segun-Lean
Nigerian writer Joshua Segun-Lean is interested in critical studies in literature and cultures. Segun-Lean’s writing has appeared in The Republic Magazine, TSA Art Magazine, and elsewhere.

Emmanuel Iduma

Photo of Emmanuel Iduma
Emmanuel Iduma is the author of two works of nonfiction, including the travelogue A Stranger’s Pose, and I Am Still With You, a memoir, forthcoming in February 2023. His criticism and nonfiction have appeared in Aperture, Art in America, Artforum, Granta, n+1, the New York Review of Books, Yale Review, and other publications. His honors include the inaugural Irving Sandler Award for New Voices in Art Criticism from AICA-USA, the C/O Berlin Talent Prize for Theory, and the Windham-Campbell Prize. He is based between Lagos, Nigeria and Norwich, UK.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poetry reading, and we’re fortunate to have Megan Sungyoon reading.

Megan Sungyoon

The back of Megan Sungyoon's head on a street
Megan Sungyoon translates between languages and across genres. After graduating from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a BFA thesis installation of text, video, and sound, Sungyoon moved to New York and earned an MFA in Poetry and Literary Translation at Columbia University. Recently selected as a runner-up for Center for Book Arts’ Chapbook Contest judged by Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, Sungyoon has works published or forthcoming in World Poetry Review, Copper Nickel, Asymptote, SAND Journal, The Margins, Hypertext Review, and Columbia Journal, where Sungyoon served as the translation editor.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.