An African Popular Literature: A Study of Onitsha Market Pamphlets

Front Cover
This 1973 text was the first detailed study of that phenomenon of the African literary scene, Onitsha market literature. Pen names and pamphlet titles adopted by Onitsha authors have often been the subject of amused comment, but it took a long time for Onitsha writing to be recognised for what it is: a genuinely popular literature, unique on Africa, written in English by Africans for an exclusively African audience. What are the origins of this literature? Why did it start in Onitsha? Why do certain themes recur? Where have the writer acquired their unconventional attitudes to love, marriage, sex? What influences have shaped the robust and unorthodox language they use? Dr Obiechina answers these questions and asks what we can learn from the Onitsha authors about social change in Nigeria - how do they attempt to reconcile the traditional rural community and the aggressive individualistic urban society with alien values?
 

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Contents

Literature for the Masses
10
Passport to the Happy Life
18
Its Sources for West Africa
32
Daughters and Fathers
42
The Love of Love 5 7
57
Style
72
The Newspaper and the Cinema
89
Religion and Morals
103
Divorce 17
142
Maxwells Books 23
150
Elizabeth my lover
151
What women are thinking about
43
Introduction
3
Womens conference on men 9
9
What Mrs Beatrice headmistress of
29
Mrs Jeneth takes over 28
35

Conclusion
115
Our modern ladies characters towards boys
128
Different Opinions 5
130
Arrival of Miss B of Arrange
136
A Bibliography of the Pamphlet Literature 237
41
Index
245
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