Call For Submissions |Poems On The Anglophone Problem In Cameroon |Revue Des Citoyens des Lettres

Following the recent civil unrest in the North and South West Regions of Cameroon, a call has been launched for submission of poems that explore and examine the Anglophone Problem in Cameroon.

The project will include poets from both French- and English-speaking parts of the country, on a fifty-fifty basis. The poets should present their own reading of the Anglophone Problem today, or share their thoughts on being a Cameroonian citizen in the context of the country’s colonial experiences and what its people have gone through; from annexation to the First World War, independence, reunification of the former French and British Cameroons in 1961, and thereafter.

The project is a call to look back at history, recognise the loopholes, celebrate the beauty of culture, and map out ways through which the people can use their multiculturalism and bilingualism as assets to conquer the world.

It would be recollected that there has been a lot of disharmony going on in the country of late, and artists and writers are not supposed to subscribe to silence, because they are the mirrors of the society and culture. Therefore, they are called upon to respond to cultural crises like the one Cameroon is currently faced with.

It is a known fact that Cameroon is a cultural melting pot, taking into consideration its bilingual nature, its welter of local languages, and its dual colonial and historical heritage; which realities are all supposed to serve as key assets to catapulting the country onto the world stage as a cultural and developmental behemoth.

Unfortunately, recent happenings, starting from the November 2016 teachers and lawyers’ strike, which was greeted with massive arrests, an Internet cut in the North and South West Regions of the country, the killing and molestation of students and unarmed civilians, the destruction of property, and the upsurge of dissenting voices on what has been termed the Anglophone Problem, have put the country’s unity to the test.

Artists and art have done similar thing in the past, bringing peace to their societies through their works. In similar circumstances for instance, art and artists rose to the challenge, channeled revolutions, brought peace, and shaped the destiny of nations; in Jamaica with Bob Marley, in South Africa with Lucky Dube and Miriam Makeba, in Ireland with Oscar Wilde, in the classical era with artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Plato, Aristotle, etc.

If these people succeeded in influencing their societies by preaching positive change, then present day Cameroonian artists can achieve the same for their society. It is indeed time to rise to the challenge like other artists are already doing in other countries. As an example amongst many, we recently saw artists come together to pay homage to the Manchester bombing victims. This is where this project, titled: Making the Best out of Cameroon’s Cultural Salad Bowl, comes in.

The goal of this project is to galvanise the finest Cameroonian poets of the younger generation, and of both sexes, to project their voices through these historical curtains and, ultimately, explore different routes Cameroon can follow to let the dust of division settle.

  1. Participants should be Cameroonian, resident in or out of the country.
  2.  The poems should be in English or French.
  3.  Participants should be 18–35 years by December 2017.
  4.  The poems should be void of vulgar expressions.
  5.  The poems should not be more than 40 lines.
  6. Each participant should send not less than and not more than five poems.

Entries should be sent to, not later than October 31, 2017.