Yvonne Onakeme Etaghene is an Ijaw Urhobo Nigerian dyke poet, performer, author, dancer, playwright, visual artist and fashion designer.

Etaghene wrote and acted in two one-woman shows: Volcano’s Birthright{s} and GUAVA. In 2015, she was awarded the Joseph Henry Jackson Award in short story fiction. She is the author of For Sizakele, a novel that addresses African lesbian/bisexual identity, love, intimate partner violence, and gender. Her mixed media visual art has been featured in four solo art exhibitions. She has published four poetry chapbooks and her writing has appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies.

Etaghene is the founder and creative director of Ankara Queen by Yv. Etaghene, a Nigerian fashion clothing and accessories line that provides space for a plethora of gender expressions while honoring and reimagining traditional Nigerian styles. She created Sugarcane, a BIPOC writing workshop that was held first in Oakland, then Toronto and at Oberlin College. She is the host of the NIGERIAN DYKE REALNESS Podcast.

Etaghene has performed in Nigeria, Brasil, South Africa, Canada, Britain and in the U.S. She received a B.A. from Oberlin College, a Master’s from New York University and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Antioch University. She was the Poet-in-Residence at University of California, Berkeley’s Poetry for the People Program in 2019 and was the Poet-In-Residence at Five Cowries Initiative, a Nigerian arts education organization in 2020.

Get your copy of For Sizakele here.

How To Pronounce My Name

3 thoughts on “Bio

  1. I’m already on your email list but just had to send you some love and light you have always been and always will be awesome! love your energy and always look forward to your messages. Congratulations on your book and happy birthday!!!



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