One of Africa’s most celebrated authors and playwrights, Ghanaian Ama Ata Aidoo, has died aged 81, the BBC reports.
In a statement, her family said “Our beloved relative and writer” passed away after a short illness, requesting privacy to allow them to grieve.
A renowned feminist, she honoured and illustrated the plight of African women in works like Changes, Our Sister Killjoy, and The Dilemma of a Ghost.
She resisted the “Western stereotype that the African woman is a downtrodden wretch.”
She also served as education minister in the early 1980s but resigned when she could not make education free.
Ata Aidoo, a professor at a university, received numerous literary honours, including the 1992 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Changes, a love story about a statistician who marries into a polygamous union after divorcing her first spouse.
Her work, including plays like Anowa, has been read in schools across West Africa, along with works of other greats like Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe.