African Literatures and Beyond

A Florilegium


Volume Editors: and
This tribute collection reflects the wide range and diversity of James Gibbs’s academic interests. The focus is on Africa, but comparative studies of other literatures also receive attention. Fiction, drama, and poetry by writers from Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Eritrea, Malawi, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Ireland, England, Germany, India, and the Caribbean are surveyed alongside significant missionaries, scientists, performers, and scholars. The writers discussed include Wole Soyinka, Chinua Achebe, Kobina Sekyi, Raphael Armattoe, J.E. Casely Hayford, Michael Dei-Anang, Kofi Awoonor, Ayi Kwei Armah, John Kolosa Kargbo, Dele Charley, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Okot p’Bitek, Jonathan Sajiwandani, Samuel E. Krune Mqhayi, A.S. Mopeli–Paulus, Kelwyn Sole, Anna Seghers, Raja Rao, and Arundhati Roy. Other essays treat the black presence in Ireland, anonymous rap artists in Chicago, the Jamaican missionary Joseph Jackson Fuller in the Cameroons, the African-American actor Ira Aldridge in Sweden, the Swedish naturalist Anders Sparrman in South Africa, and the literary scholar and editor Eldred Durosimi Jones in Sierra Leone. Interviews with the Afro-German Africanist Theodor Wonja Michael and the Irish-Nigerian dramatist Gabriel Gbadamosi are also included. Also offered are poems by Jack Mapanje and Kofi Anyidoho, short stories by Charles R. Larson and Robert Fraser, plays by Femi Osofisan and Martin Banham, and an account of a dramatic reading of a script written and co-performed by James Gibbs.
Contributors: Anne Adams, Sola Adeyemi, Kofi Anyidoho, Awo Mana Asiedu, Martin Banham, Eckhard Breitinger, Gordon Collier, James Currey, Geoffrey V. Davis, Chris Dunton, Robert Fraser, Raoul J. Granqvist, Gareth Griffiths, C.L. Innes, Charles R. Larson, Bernth Lindfors, Leif Lorentzon, Jack Mapanje, Christine Matzke, Mpalive–Hangson Msiska, Femi Osofisan, Eustace Palmer, Jane Plastow, Lynn Taylor, and Pia Thielmann.

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Geoffrey V. Davis co-edits the series Cross/Cultures and the African studies journal Matatu. Recent publications include Narrating Nomadism and African Literatures: Post-colonial Literatures in English: Sources and Resources (both co-ed. 2013). Bernth Lindfors, founding editor of the journal Research in African Literatures, is writing a biography of Ira Aldridge (two volumes have so far appeared: The Early Years, 1807–1833 and The Vagabond Years, 1833–1852, both 2011).
West Africa
Mpalive–Hangson Msiska: Cultural Studies, Power, and the Idea of the Hegemonic in Wole Soyinka’s Works
Sola Adeyemi: Interpreting the Interpreters: The Narratives of the Postcolony in Wole Soyinka’s The Interpreters
Awo Mana Asiedu: The Enduring Relevance of Kobina Sekyi’s The Blinkards in Twenty-First-Century Ghana
Eustace Palmer: The Agony and the Ecstasy: Sierra Leonean Dramatists’ Confrontation with the Sierra Leonean Landscape
Gareth Griffiths: The Reverend Joseph Jackson Fuller: A ‘Native’ Evangelist and ‘Black’ Identity in the Cameroons
Eastern and Central Africa
Jane Plastow: A Modest Plant, Easily Crushed: Radio Drama in Blin, Eritrea
Pia Thielmann: Through Determination to Happiness? Eastern African Slavery in Life and Literature
Geoffrey V. Davis: “Shine your light, Zimbabwe”
South Africa
Chris Dunton: From Mqhayi to Sole: Four Poems on the Sinking of the Troopship Mendi
Raoul J. Granqvist: Fieldwork as Translation: Linnaeus’ Apostle Anders Sparrman and the Hottentot Perspective
Kofi Anyidoho: Orality and Performance: A Source of Pan-African Social Self
C.L. Innes and Gordon Collier: Africans and Ireland: History, Society, and the Black Nexus
Bernth Lindfors: Ira Aldridge in Stockholm
Anne Adams: “Who’ll get my library after I’m gone?” An Interview with the Septuagenarian Afro-German Africanist Theodor Wonja Michael
Christine Matzke: Into the Heart of Whiteness: Performing African Moon in Krefeld: Gabriel Gbadamosi in Conversation
Eckhard Breitinger: Von Jenseits des Meeres: Romantic and Revolutionary Visions of Caribbean History
Leif Lorentzon: “But it will have to be a new English”: A Comparative Discussion of the ‘Nativization’ of English Among Afro- and Indo-English Authors
James Currey and Lynn Taylor: African Literature Today and African Theatre: The James Gibbs Connection
Poetry, Fiction, Drama
Kofi Anyidoho: He Spoke Truth – Q u i e t l y
Jack Mapanje: The Carwash, Clifton Moor, York (for James & Patience)
Charles R. Larson: Crosscut
Robert Fraser : Kariba’s Last Stand
Femi Osofisan: Odùduwà, Don’t Go! A One-Act Play
Martin Banham: Mosquito! Or, Addition, Vernacular, or Rat? A Railway for Freetown
C.L. Innes: James Gibbs’s Pinteresque Diversion
Notes on Contributors
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