Meron Hadero on Writing Ethiopia and the Persistence of Hope
This Week from the Reading Women Podcast
In this week’s episode, Kendra and Didi talks with Meron Hadero about her short story “Street Sweep,” which recently won the AKO Caine Prize for African Writing.
From the episode:
Didi: Getu is resourceful and tenacious in “The Street Sweep.” Is his character a tribute to the people of Ethiopia? Is your writing speaking specifically to Ethiopians?
Meron: Thank you for saying that. I have to say, I admire Getu and his resourcefulness and tenacity. It’s something that I’m so pleased to hear is the reader experience as well. I think Getu represents this kind of persistence of hope. Whether or not he represents something larger than that I think is for an audience. I love raising questions in stories, but I don’t want to to answer them and take that away from a reader. But I’ll say that the hope he carries and represents is important, and that’s something that I really hope is captured through those qualities that you mentioned.
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Meron Hadero is an Ethiopian-American who was born in Addis Ababa and came to the U.S. via Germany as a young child. She is the winner of the 2020 Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing. Her short stories have been shortlisted for the 2019 Caine Prize for African Writing and published in Zyzzyva, Ploughshares, Addis Ababa Noir, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, The Iowa Review, The Missouri Review, New England Review, Best American Short Stories, among others.