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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:French
Record Number:53445
Doc. No:TL23399
Call number:‭3236387‬
Main Entry:Pierre Nzokizwanimana
Title & Author:“Afrographie”: L'écriture comme sites de conflits identitaires dans l'œuvre romanesque d'Ahmadou KouroumaPierre Nzokizwanimana
College:Michigan State University
Date:2006
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2006
Page No:333
Abstract:This dissertation is a hermeneutic reading of four novels by the Ivorian writer, Ahmadou Kourouma: Les Soleils des indépendances , Monnè, outrages et défis, En attendant le vote des bêtes sauvages, and Allah n'est pas obligé. The exegesis is based on the assumption that there is indeed a sustained esthetic and thematic continuity in his writing. A set of guiding socio-cultural and political motifs evolve coherently through Kourouma's work. Tracing them allows one to view his work for the first time as a whole. The study uncovers an author who vacillates between iconography and support for some Malinke traditions, between afropessimism and optimism. Throughout his career, Kourouma reinterprets the events of pre-colonial, colonial and postcolonial Africa in both ideological and linguistic terms. His views about what led to the current failure of African nations are rather non-conformist. He asserts that the causes of this failure, though in part exogenous (colonial rule, neo-colonization), are mainly endogenous. Regarding the latter, he demystifies a widespread ideology by the proponents of the Negritude movement who saw pre-colonial Africa as a paradise. He exposes the participation of many kings and princes in the slave trade, their violence against their own population and the compromises that many made with the colonial masters. He also denounces some cultural practices and beliefs (fetishism, predestination, excision, etc.) that have added to the alienation brought about by slavery and colonialism an impediment to embracing elements of modernity susceptible of improving their lives. He reveals the shortcomings of important social figures such as kings, marabouts and griots whose attitudes were marred by many myths that prevented them from adjusting to the new political order. Paradoxically, Kourouma sees in some African traditions as both an anchor (proverbs) and a springboard for the emergence of an open, democratic discourse: the "palabre", the joking relationship, and the "donsomana" (a multi-part epic and cathartic song-poem recited for the "maîtres-chasseurs" within the Malinke and Bambara cultures). Most importantly, faced with the mediocrity and failure of the male figures, women outmatch them by putting up a fight against their social fate and that of the victims of wars in Africa. They are ultimately the true heroes of Kourouma's novels. However, Kourouma fails to celebrate modern male heroes (Mandela, Cabral, Nasser, Sankara, N'Krumah, Lumumba) whose example could inspire present generations to greatness and temper his afropessimism.
Subject:Social sciences; Language, literature and linguistics; Cote d'Ivoire; Excision; Griot; Iconography; Kourouma, Ahmadou; Marabout; Political violence; African literature; Cultural anthropology; African history; 0326:Cultural anthropology; 0316:African literature; 0331:African history
Added Entry:A. Norris
Added Entry:Michigan State University