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Brunel University - The 2019 Brunel International African Poetry Prize Movemeback initiative cover image


The Brunel International African Poetry Prize is a literary award aimed at the development, celebration and promotion of poetry from Africa. The prize is sponsored by Brunel University and partnered by Commonwealth Writers, the Africa Centre, London, UK, and the African Poetry Book Fund USA. It comes with a £3,000 honorarium and is aimed at unpublished poets with a manuscript of ten poems

British-Nigerian writer, Bernardine Evaristo, Professor of Creative Writing at Brunel University London, initiated the Brunel International African Poetry Prize in 2012 in order to revitalise African poetry, which at that time was almost invisible on the literary landscape. The Prize planned to draw attention to this poetry and to encourage a new generation of poets who might one day become an international presence.


  1. The prize is open to African poets, defined as those who were born in Africa, or who are nationals of an African country, or whose parents are African.
  2. The prize is open to African poets who have not yet had a full-length poetry book published. Self-published poetry books, chapbooks and pamphlets are exempt from this stipulation.
  3. Only poems written in English are accepted. Poems translated into English are also accepted with a percentage of the prize going to the translator.
  4. Each entrant must submit 10 poems to be eligible, no more and no less. There is no stipulation as to the content of submitted poems but no poem should exceed 30 lines in length.
  5. The poems may have been previously published or won previous awards.
  6. Poems must be the original work of the entrant.


A prize of £3000. Furthermore, since its inception, most of the poets who have been nominated and/or won this award have published chapbooks with the African Poetry Book Fund series of ‘New Generation Chapbook Box Sets’. Some of these poets are also publishing, or about to publish, their first full collections.

About Brunel University

Brunel University London, founded in 1966, is a university located in Uxbridge, London, United Kingdom. It was named after the Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel and in 2016, Brunel celebrated 50 years as a university. It is a public research university and winner of the Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2011 for Higher and Further Education. English and Creative Writing at Brunel has been ranked in the Top 11 for the subject in the Guardian University League Table for the past four years.

Brunel is organised into three colleges – Engineering, Design and Physical Sciences; Business, arts and social sciences; and health and life sciences – and three major research institutes – energy futures and environment; health and societies; and materials and manufacturing.

The university is also recognised globally for its work in engineering and technology. It is also a member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the European University Association and Universities UK.