Indigenous publishing is integral to national identity and development : cultural, social, and economic. Such publishing reflects a people’s history and experience, belief systems, and their concomitant expressions through language, writing, and art. In turn, a people’s interaction with other cultures is informed by their published work. Publishing preserves, enhances, and develops a society’s culture and its interaction with others. In Africa, indigenous publishers continue to seek autonomy to pursue these aims : free from the constraints of the colonial past, the strictures of economic structural adjustment policies, the continuing dominance of multinational publishers (particularly in textbooks), regressive language policies, and lack of recognition by African governments of the economic and cultural importance of publishing. African publishers seek to work collectively, to harness the digital age, and to take their place in the international marketplace on equal terms, Africa’s own voice.
This article, by Walter Bgoya and Mary Jay, was originally published in Research in African Literatures, vol. 44, no. 2, Summer 2013, 17-34, published by Indiana University Press.