Tejumola Olaniyan (1959-2019)

Jury 2

We are deeply saddened by the news that a dear friend and member of our Awards Committee, Tejumola Olaniyan, has passed away. "We had looked forward to seeing Tejumola at the Prince Claus Awards this week. It is heartbreaking to hear of his passing. On behalf of the Awards Committee, and the entire Prince Claus Fund, our hearts go out to his family and many friends." - Fariba Derakhshani, Programme Coordinator of the Awards and Secretary to the Awards Committee

Tejumola Olaniyan was Louise Durham Mead Professor of English, African, and African Diaspora cultural studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his BA and MA from the Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria, and PhD from Cornell University. He taught at the University of Virginia from 1991 to 2001. Olaniyan was at UW Madison since 2001 and was currently chair of the Department of African Cultural Studies until his passing. He directed the African Diaspora and the Atlantic World Research Circle (ADAWRC). He served on the executive boards of the African Studies Association (ASA, 2013-2015) and the African Literature Association (ALA, 2010-2016), and was President of the ALA in 2014-2015. He was the Editor in Chief of Journal of the African Literature Association (JALA). Some of his authored, edited or co-edited books include Scars of Conquest/Masks of Resistance: The Invention of Cultural Identities in African, African American and Caribbean Drama (Oxford UP, 1995); Arrest the Music! Fela and His Rebel Art and Politics (Indiana UP, 2004); African Literature: An Anthology of Criticism and Theory (Blackwell, 2010); Audible Empire: Music, Global Politics, Critique (Duke UP, 2016); and State and Culture in Postcolonial Africa: Enchantings (Indiana UP, 2017). He also ran the comprehensive web encyclopedia, africacartoons.com. 

Prince Claus Awards Committee

Tejumola Olaniyan, Professor of African and English Languages and Literature, Madison, US (1959-2019) 

Manuel de Rivero (Chair), Architect and Urbanist, Lima, Peru 

Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi, Curator and Visual Artist, Sharjah, Emirate of Sharjah

Sandra den Hamer, Director of the Eye Filmmuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amar Kanwar, Visual Artist and Filmmaker, Delhi, India

Fariba Derakhshani, Programme Coordinator of the Awards and Secretary to the Awards Committee.


Photo: Awards Committee in the summer of 2019 - Left to right : Amar Kanwar, Tejumola Olaniyan, Fariba Derakhshani, Sandra den Hamer, Manuel de Rivero, Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi.