WHY PUBLISH AFRICAN AUTHORS?
Christian bookstores in Africa are full of books by western authors like John Maxwell, Joel Osteen, and Joyce Myers, but have very few books written by African authors or addressing the daily realities facing local believers. In fact, a recent study of African readers discovered a strong desire of those surveyed to read books by African Christians, however only 9.5% of those surveyed identified one as their favorite author.
“Knowledge without wisdom is like water in the sand.”
–A Guinean proverb from the Africa Study Bible
Biblical truth that is not adapted to local contexts can fall on deaf ears, like water disappearing in the sand. Western marriage books, for example, don’t deal with issues such as dowries, polygamy, extended family expectations, or inter-tribal marriage. Because of this need, a Kenyan couple with years of marriage counselling experience is currently writing on this topic for Oasis.
Oasis believes that African Christians need contextualized resources for effective discipleship. We also believe that the global church needs to hear African perspectives.
Non-African Christians enthusiastically receive the Africa Study Bible, amazed to find fresh insights on familiar passages. In the body of Christ, each part needs the others. African authors can teach believers around the world something new about spiritual warfare, the false allure of the prosperity gospel, and God’s covenant with his people.
What is Oasis doing to help African Christian authors?
There is a reason we do not hear from African Christian authors. Many publishers are hesitant to work with authors without name recognition in a Western market, or don’t understand the significance of their message. As a result, African authors often lack access to professional editorial and design services. Some self-publish, but only manage to distribute their books at speaking engagements or to a few online readers within their country. Others are daunted by the solo effort and cost of self-publishing, and end up never printing their books.