Contemporary African Literature (LIT2564.01)

Devon Walker-Figueroa

This course serves as an introduction to the vital stories and voices of contemporary African literature. We will devote ourselves to closely reading novels, short stories, poems, and plays that explore modern African lives, both as they exist in relation to and imagine futures beyond the cruel legacies of genocide, apartheid, and (neo)colonialism. In the pages we read, you will find woven tales of national and personal liberations; intimate portraits of township life, full of grief, grit, and humor; family sagas unfolding across landscapes touched by drought and fraught with the memory of genocide; and glimpses into the ambitions and anxieties of emerging African intellectuals, who feel acutely the many hopes pinned to their futures. From exciting emerging voices to Nobel laureates, writers whose works we may cover include Wole Soyinka, Veronique Tadjo, Rémy Ngamije, Tayeb Salih, Chinua Achebe, Panashe Chigumazi, David Diop, Magogodi Oamphela Makhene, Akwaeke Amezi, Keith Vries, NoViolet Bulawayo, and Njabulo Ndebele.

Learning Outcomes:
-Engage with and closely read twentieth and twenty-first century African poetry, fiction, and drama.
-Situate the given texts within their respective historical, national, sociopolitical, cultural, aesthetic, and linguistic frameworks.
-Gain a better understanding of Africa’s literary history and its complex orature traditions that remain vital to many contemporary African writers.
-Craft critical essays that engage deeply with contemporary African literature.

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
M 3:40PM - 5:30PM & W 4:10PM - 6:00PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 20
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: 2000 , All courses , Black Studies , Four Credit , Fully In-Person , Literature , New Courses , Updates