Wayétu Moore: ‘Storytelling gives me a sense of belonging to this world’

James Reith |

Alongside busy social enterprises, Moore has written a novel about Liberia’s origins in which she hopes her compatriots will recognise themselves

‘Representation is important’ … Wayétu Moore. Photograph: Yoni Levy

WH Auden once said it was a “fallacious belief that art ever makes anything happen”. Had there never been any art, he claimed, “the history of man would be materially unchanged”. Wayétu Moore, however, believes differently. The Liberian-American author and social entrepreneur opened her own bookshop, One Moore Bookstore, Liberia’s first dedicated to reading for pleasure.

She started One Moore Book, a non-profit publisher of children’s books for underrepresented communities, after seeing first-hand how children engaged better with characters that look like them. And somehow she also found time to write a novel: She Would Be King, a fantastical retelling of Liberia’s founding. “It was in reading that I was able to make sense of my new country,” Moore says of her early days in the US. “Representation is important.”

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About Cholo Brooks 10293 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.