What we’re not reading this week

A (non-comprehensive) list of “early” “modern” African novels with which we could also jump-started this course.  All written before 1960, which was a watershed moment in the history of sub-Saharan African decolonization (which is not to say that all of African actually decolonized at this time, or that decolonization took the same form across all parts of the continent!).  As mentioned in class, Amos Tutuola’s fiction provides a stark contrast to that of Achebe.  Many recent critics, however, have argued that Tutuola’s lack of explicit engagement with colonialism does not mean his writing isn’t actually about colonialism at all.  I’ve heard some of these arguments at conferences, but suspect there are actually a few articles in print on this topic by now.

Thomas Mofolo, Chaka (1910/1925)

Sol Plaatje, Mhudi (1913)

Abrahams, Mine Boy (1946)

Naguib Mahfouz, Midaq Alley (1947)

Alan Paton, Cry the Beloved Country (1948)

Nadine Gordimer, The Lying Days (1953)

Camara Laye, The African Child (1953)

Amos Tutuola, The Palm-Wine Drinkard (1952)

Tutuola, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts (1954)

Ferdinand Oyono, House Boy (1956)

Mahfouz, Palace Walk (1956)

Assia Djebar, The Mischief (1957)

Mahfouz, Palace of Desire (1957)

Mahfouz, Palace of Desire (1957)

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