The "Joola", this "Senegalese Titanic" saved from oblivion by literature
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It is a forgotten drama.If it haunts Senegalese memories, the Joola and its shipwreck, on the night of September 26 to 27, 2002, has not taken in our memories the same place as other dramas, such as the one the Titanic - which in 1912 killed between 1,490 and 1,520 people.Yet it was one of the deadliest disasters in the history of civilian shipping.At least 1,863 people were killed when the ferry which had been providing the link between Ziguinchor, in Casamance, and Dakar since 1990, sank off the Gambian coast.It turned around in five minutes "like a calabash", according to the testimony of the time.hundreds of students who were getting ready to go back to school, many children under 5, many bananas, these street vendors who left to sell their goods in the capital, and about thirty Europeans.their history to all, their memory, that the French writer Adrien Absolu wanted to romanticize has with The Missing of Joola.
One day in 2016, after his flight to Dakar was canceled, the writer, who works at the French Development Agency (AFD), found himself stranded in Ziguinchor after his flight to Dakar was canceled.killing time he wanders around at random, and finds himself in front of a memorial.In the heart of a small garden invaded by vegetation, he is facing 1,863 pieces of mosaics in tribute to the 1,863 victims of the shipwreck.how this information could have escaped him.One thing led to another, he remembers that on September 26, 2002, he was in Brazil, far from the African news.He then noticed the few books that have been devoted to the subject and deduce that a book remains to be written.In addition to the documentary by Alain Delvalpo and Jean-Philippe Navarre, “Souvenirs du Joola” or the novel Les Veilleurs de Sangomar, by Fatou Diome (Albin Michel, 2019), the story did not inspire artists much.
Posted Date: 2020-12-05