top of page

marcel kemadjou


Marcel Kemadjou Njanke was born in Douala, Cameroon, on December 6, 1970.

He had always considered writing a waste of time despite the invitations of his younger sister who found him a certain talent. Motivated by her, he participated in a contest and won the Central African Young Poetry Prize in 1994. This is how the publications follow one another, Cris de l´âme, a selection of poems published in 1997, followed by Le mendiant bleu -novela short- in 2000. In 2003 he published Poto-poto blues (poems) and in 2005, La chambre de Crayonne, a collection of texts. He lives in Douala and there he animates Open Book, an association for the promotion of books and reading. What is striking in his poetry is the close union with music that favors a writing abundant in images, simple, dense, lively and joyful. It is a very often committed poetry that develops themes related to the impoverishment of his country, freedom through the segregation of the new Western laws on immigration, political hypocrisy, all seen from the point of view of the street. He therefore makes use of word games, of the "universal" language of the street and sometimes of what is called in his country Camfrangli which is a mixture of French, English and Cameroonian. His poems reveal a vast culture, always avoiding falling into the specialized language of scholarship. For him, poetry must use a language as universal as that of music so that the message can be captured spontaneously by those who listen or read it. Numerous repetitions are consequently noted which have the charming value of sayings.

bottom of page