At the Pontas Agency, we are delighted to share some more details about the hotly awaited arrival of Minna Salami’s non-fiction debut Sensuous Knowledge: A Black Feminist Approach for Everyone. Drawing on a range of traditions, including personal narrative, feminist theory, popular culture, philosophy and African myth, Sensuous Knowledge offers a bold, unique, Africa-centred and black feminist vision of hope for a world in crisis, and shatters our illusions around gender, race and power.
The first release will take place in the UK with London-based publisher Zed Books on March 19th 2020. In the words of Bernardine Evaristo, winner of the Booker Prize 2019, this is «A probing, challenging and imaginative book that dares position black feminism as the prism through which we can all better experience and understand the world.» The colour of the cover is the closest to one of the oldest blues in Africa (blue being the colour for feminism in Africa), which is the ancient Egyptian khesbedj. The soft and sensuous feminine curves and the elegance and grace of the collage evokes a feeling of journeys, memory and history. And some say this cover makes you think of African masks, sculptures and dance.
The following release will be the North American one on March 31st 2020, being published with Amistad, a division of New York-based HarperCollins. Below is the cover with a portrait of the author taken by Alan Howard, where she is wearing two cowry pendants: the long one was her late mother’s and the short one was given to her by a Yoruba shaman to encourage lucid writing. Cowries are insignia of the goddess Olokun/Yemoja and thought to symbolise the “African Dream” as an ancient monetary form, as well as a futuristic divination tool. And in the right photo is Minna Salami with her American editor, Tracy Sherrod, when they met for the first time in New York in May 2019.
The third release in the first semestre of 2020 will be the Spanish translation, to be published by Barcelona-based publisher Temas de Hoy – an imprint of the Planeta Group – on May 5th. After many discussions, the title was changed and will be The Other Side of The Mountain. With the subtitle: “This is how you would see the world if it weren’t always dictated by a man, white person, European”. The colour of the cover was very clear from the beginning: it had to be the “African feminist blue” and the image wants to recreate the symbolic “mountain” mentioned in the title with the traditional African patterns. In the photo, the enthusiastic Spanish language editorial team (from left to right, María Sobrino, Sergi Sendiones and Marcel Ventura).
The book will also be released in German (with Matthes & Seitz Verlag) and in Finnish (with Schildts & Söderstrom) and publication dates are still to be confirmed.
For more information, please contact Anna Soler-Pont.