Creativity: Fiction, Languages, Life and Songs

edited by Toyin Falola and Ann Genova

Creativity: Fiction, Languages, Life and Songs

In songs, dance, and drama, the fame of the Yoruba of Nigeria is firmly established and universally acknowledged. Also with an established literary tradition, the Yoruba have asserted themselves as a dominant force in the world of creativity, touching on various genres and producing men and women of fame. Stars such as Wole Soyinka and Zulu Sofola are represented here. The power of language forms a crucial element of their creativity, with various authors examining the nature of Yoruba language and education, and the multiple uses to which language has been put to compose plays and songs. Chanters of words and famous recorders of music such as Haruna Isola and Fela Anikulapo Kuti are presented in this volume, not as competitors but as companions in the ever-expanding horizons of Yoruba eclectic manifestations of creativity. The future of the language, in the making of new idioms and dictionaries, is examined in an attempt to position the Yoruba and their cultures in the ever-changing world of cultural inventions.

Urbanization and African Cultures

edited by Toyin Falola and Steven J. Salm

Urbanization and African Cultures

Urbanization and African Cultures affirms the importance of African cities in the modernization of African cultures and shows how they reflect the impact of globalization. Cities are presented as centers of culture and power and as powerful agencies that provide opportunities to generate new ideas. The book shows how cities empower Africans with the opportunity to assert themselves, to use culture to assert individual freedom and dignity, to articulate ideas of ethnicity and group solidarity, to portray class, and even to show off poverty.

The Yoruba Diaspora in the Atlantic World

edited by Toyin Falola and Matt D. Childs

The Yoruba Diaspora in the Atlantic World

This innovative anthology focuses on the enslavement, middle passage, American experience, and return to Africa of a single cultural group, the Yoruba. Moving beyond descriptions of generic African experiences, this anthology will allow students to trace the experiences of one cultural group throughout the cycle of the slave experience in the Americas. The nineteen essays, employing a variety of disciplinary perspectives, provide a detailed study of how the Yoruba were integrated into the Atlantic world through the slave trade and slavery, the transformations of Yoruba identities and culture, and the strategies for resistance employed by the Yoruba in the New World.

The Politics of the Global Oil Industry: An Introduction

edited by Toyin Falola and Ann Genova

The Politics of the Global Oil Industry: An Introduction

The relationship of international politics and the global oil industry affects everyone but is understood by few. Taking a well-balanced and objective approach to deconstructing this intricate web for those unfamiliar with the industry, Toyin Falola and Ann Genova introduce the major players in the field, offering cogent and up-to-date information about the countries, companies, organizations, and people who shape the contemporary history of oil. They break down the essentials, describing the discovery process, the different types of oil, and the various processes by which oil gets to the market. Then they provide a brief history of the major oil-producing countries, followed by a discussion of OPEC and international efforts to control the price and supply of oil. After setting the stage, they introduce the most salient political issues that are influenced by oil, namely, environmental protection, human rights, and economic development. Finally, a look at each of seven major oil exporters—Iraq, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela—demonstrates that the "black gold" can be both a blessing and a curse for the countries that produce it.

The Dark Webs: Perspectives on Colonialism in Africa

edited by Toyin Falola

The Dark Webs: Perspectives on Colonialism in Africa

This book is an intellectual history of colonialism in Africa. The book focuses on ideas espoused by historians and creative writers on various aspects of colonial rule; the sources of the ideas; the vision of a post-colonial society that they created; and a critique of those ideas. Part one examines the context to understand the colonial period, with emphasis on the historical linkages between the colonial era and the post-colonial, nationalism, pan-Africanism, new identities, and new agencies of control. The second part analyzes a number of key literary texts, drawing from the writings on apartheid in South Africa, the works of Ngugi Wa Thiong'o, Micere Mugo, and V.Y. Mudimbe. In the third part, seven essays examine the ideas of Kenneth Dike, Betwell Ogot, Adu Boahen, Ruth First, Ade Ajayi, Cheikh Anta Diop, and Robert Mugabe.

Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora

edited by Toyin Falola and Ann Genova

Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora

This volume rests on the crucial recognition that Yorba culture has extended far beyond the boundaries of Nigeria. For members of Yoruba diaspora, temporal and geographic distance has not fully erased their memory or cultural activism. Orisa worship remains one of the most prominent and recognizable evidence of this connection. With millions of Orisa practitioners in the world, Yoruba gods are very much alive and form part of the Nigerian and Yoruba diasporan religious experience. This Volume seeks to introduce new ideas, perspectives, and methodologies on Orisa worship. The chapters reflect a multi-disciplinary approach to orsia study, covering a wide range of topics such a divination, the practice of Santeria, festivals and songs, the creation of the orisa-based communities within the United States, and globalization of cults. Most importantly, the volume documents the survival of religious practices, and its important role of reinforcing cultural values within a community as well as empowering its members to progress in the modern world.

Nigerian History, Politics and Affairs:
The Collected Essays of Adiele Afigbo

edited by Toyin Falola

Nigerian History, Politics and Affairs: The Collected Essays of Adiele Afigbo

These essays attempt to focus the light of history on Nigeria, Nigerians and their contemporary condition and thus to help show the way forward. The root idea, which is fundamental to all historical works, is that when the mind interacts with the past or facts of the past, the result is something like a torchlight whose beam is focused on the present, thus enabling us to achieve a better understanding of the problems that face us and to attempt rational solutions to them. Afigbo has probed deep into Nigeria’s past, bringing out all the facets, all the elements, and all the issues that are necessary to improve the presen

Myth, History and Society: The Collected Works of Adiele Afigbo

edited by Toyin Falola

Myth, History and Society: The Collected Works of Adiele Afigbo

The founding premise of this book is that Nigerian historians, indeed historians of Africa, have from the birth of the new African historiography seen and pursued historical studies and historical writing as part of the larger effort to create, consolidate and run modern and modernizing states in Africa. It is this larger process that Professor Adiele Afigbo refers to as statecraft. Afigbo makes the point that, strictly speaking, this role is not a new one in Africa. It is a revival and continuation of a process and profession which has been part of the African way of life as seen in “the older versions of history,” which we refer to today as myths and legends, and which were constructed to shore up the states of old Africa and to create wide enough political space for the citizens of each state and society.

Igbo History and Society: The Essays of Adiele Afigbo

edited by Toyin Falola

Igbo History and Society: The Essays of Adiele Afigbo

This collection of essays by Adiele Afigbo provides stimulating and original accounts of the Igbo of Eastern Nigeria from ancient times to the present, incorporating all the leading issues and findings on this major group. The voice is that of the preeminent scholar and guru among the Igbo. Professor Afigbo brings out the best in the Igbo, while concentrating on aspects of their interactions in the larger African world.

Igbo Art and Culture and Other Essays by Simon Ottenberg

edited by Toyin Falola

Igbo Art and Culture and Other Essays by Simon Ottenberg

This volume encompasses over forty years of scholarly research on African art, both traditional and modern, by the anthropologist Simon Ottenberg. The focus is on the arts of the Afikpo, an Igbo group in southeastern Nigeria and on Bafodea Limba of northern Sierra Leone. The essays discuss art objects and music in the context of their use in performance and ritual, and the symbolism of aesthetic forms and behavior. Stress in the writing is placed on obtaining Africans’ conceptions of their own arts blended with Western viewpoints.