Library Weekly

The ASCL's Library Weekly is our library’s weekly spotlight on African people and events. Inspired by the SciHiBlog, this service is based on information retrieved from Wikipedia and Wikidata and is completed with selected titles from the ASCL Library Catalogue. 

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Noémia de Sousa

Noémia de Sousa (Source: Biografias de mulheres africanas, 4 December 2002, Mozambican poet, translator and journalist Noémia de Sousa died in Cascais, Portugal. She is traditionally designated as the founding mother of Mozambican national poetry. 

De Sousa was born on 20 September 1926 in Catembe, near the city of Maputo. At eight years of age she lost her father and while two of her five brothers were already attending university in Lisbon, she pursued her studies at the Escola Comercial. When she was twenty years old, she started to become known in the literary milieu of the Mozambican capital for her highly evocative poetic work that centers on the resistance of African women and the struggle of the people for freedom. In 1951 she published at her own expenses her cahier Sangue Negro, which started to circulate illegally soon afterward. During the same year, she was exiled to Portugal.

De Sousa lived in Lisbon, working as a translator from 1951 to 1964. She then left for Paris, where she worked for the local consulate of Morocco. Being unemployed she decided to move back to Portugal in 1973, where she saw the Carnation Revolution and collaborated with many news agencies, including the national Portuguese news agency, LUSA. Her work is spread in many reviews and newspapers, inter alia, in the Mensagem, Itinerário, O Brado Africano, Moçambique 58, Vértice, and the Brazilian review Sul. She often published her work under the name Vera Micaia.

In 2001, her poetry collection Sangue Negro was reprinted by the Mozambican Writers’ Association (AEMO).

(Source: Wikipedia and the Dictionary of African biography)

Selected publications

Imagens da busca de felicidade em Noémia de Sousa / Maria Teresa Salgado Guimarães da Silva.
In: África e africanidades, n. 39, p. 30-40, 2021

O Sangue Negro da escrita : poética, estética e política em Noémia de Sousa / Lunara Carolline Nascimento Gomes. - Recife: Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, 2020

Identidade da mulher moçambicana nas obras de Noémia de Sousa e Paulina Chiziane / Luciana Neuma Silva Muniz Meira Dantas. -  Campina Grande : Universidade Estadual da Paraíba, 2011

Sangue negro : poesia / Noémia de Sousa. Maputo : Marimbique, 2011.

A voz da subalternidade e seu poder no discurso poético de Noémia de Sousa / Jacqueline Britto Sant'anna.
In: ângulo, 117, p. 77-80, 2009

Noémia de Sousa: modulação de uma escrita em turbilhão / Carla Maria Ferreira Souza.
In: África e africanidades, ano 1, n. 1, 2008

Mother Africa, Father Marx : women's writing of Mozambique, 1948-2002 / Hilary Owen. - Lewisburg : Bucknell University Press, 2007

Moçambique : encontro com escritores / Laban Michel. - Porto : Fundação Eng. António de Almeida, 1998

Vozes moçambicanas : literatura e nacionalidade / Patrick Chabal. - Lisboa : Vega, 1994

Noémia de Sousa: “mãe dos poetas moçambicanos”, Rádio Uerj, 13/09/21

Timeline of Mozambican women writers via Wikidata