Véronique Tadjo

Graduation Office
Tuesday 28 May 2024

Véronique Tadjo will be awarded DLitt on Monday 10 June 2024 during the second ceremony.

Véronique Tadjo is an Honorary Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she was Head of French and Francophone Studies until 2015. She is the 2024 Weidenfeld Professor at St Anne’s College, Oxford.

Véronique holds a doctorate in Black American literature and civilization from the Sorbonne Paris IV and is also an author and painter. Her novels have been translated into several languages.

Véronique Tadjo

Véronique Tadjo was born in Paris, France, to an Ivorian civil servant and a French painter and sculptor. Raised in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, she travelled extensively with her family.

She earned her BA degree from the University of Abidjan and completed her doctorate in African-American Literature and Civilization at the Sorbonne. In 1983, she received a Fulbright research scholarship to study at Howard University in Washington, DC.

Véronique’s diverse body of work encompasses short stories, tales, poetry, novels, memoirs, paintings, drawings, and children’s literature. Through her art, she delves into themes ranging from life in sub-Saharan modern cities and love in the postcolonial era to exploring human and nonhuman resilience amidst global catastrophes like the Ebola crisis and the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. Her work also explores the rich tapestry of myths and history of West Africa.

Her titles in English include As the Crow Flies (2001 and 2024), The Shadow of Imana: travels to the heart of Rwanda (2002), Queen Pokou (2005), Far from my Father (2014), Amour: Fields of Battle, Fields of Love, published by The Massachusetts Review, e-book series (2019). 

Her novel, In the Company of Men, was awarded the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction in 2022 and Best Novel of the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences in South Africa in 2023.

She shares her time between London, Paris, and Abidjan, where she also writes, and illustrates, books for young people. 

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