Francophone African Poetry and Drama

A Cultural History Since the 1960s


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About the Book

Scholars examining literature from former French colonies sometimes view it wrongly as simply an outgrowth of colonial literature. By suggesting new ways to understand the multiple voices present, this book explores how Francophone African poetry and theatre in particular, since the 1960s, constitute both an organic cultural product and a reflection of the diverse African cultures in which they originate. Themes explored in five chapters include the many kinds of African identity formation, the resistance to former notions of literary composition as art, a remapping of social responsibility, and the impact of globalization on Francophone Africa’s participation in world economics, politics and culture. This study highlights the inner workings of Francophone African literature and suggests a canonization of modern Francophone works from a world perspective.

About the Author(s)

Richard J. Gray II is an assistant professor of French at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio. His fields of study include interdisciplinary approaches to French literary studies, language, film, cultural studies, and women’s studies. He lives in Ashland, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

Richard J. Gray II
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 212
Bibliographic Info: appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7558-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1705-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface  1
Introduction  5
1. The Black Man’s Burden and the Struggle for Independence  31
2. Oral Societies and Writing in the Language of the Oppressed  58
3. Francophone African Poetry in the Modern World  84
4. Histories, Legends and Myths in Francophone African Theatre  106
5. Writing the Female Body in Francophone African Women’s Poetry and Theatre  135
Conclusion  165
Appendix I: Transcript of Barack Obama’s Speech at Nelson Mandela’s Memorial  173
Appendix II: Recently Published Works by Francophone Women Writers  177
Chapter Notes  181
Works Cited  189
Index  201