| Author | Photographer |
Stephen Belcher is the son of a Foreign Service officer, and spent much of his childhood in different parts of Africa (Egypt,Nigeria, Benin/Dahomey, Tanzania, with a year at a boarding school in Kenya) and in France and Italy. This background compelled him, in college and graduate school, to include Africa in his research interests.
It also gave him the language skills in French to serve as a contract interpreter with the U.S. State Department accompanying African visitors around the US. This connection led to work accompanying American performing arts groups to countries he could never have visited otherwise, in Africa, Asia, the Near-East, and Latin America.
He has a doctorate in Comparative Literature from Brown University. He has taught at the University of Noukchott in Mauritania as a Peace Corps volunteer, the Pennsylvania State University, and the University of Kankan in Guinea on a Fulbright grant.
He is the author of Epic Traditions of Africa (Indiana UP) and African Myths of Origin (Penguin Classics), and now lives in Vermont. He is working on a family history that includes two woman artists, and continues his involvement with African studies. He has recently completed two translations of books on Guinean history by Lansine Kaba, and is working with a colleague, Stephen Bulman, on a corpus of colonial-era accounts of the story of Sunjata.