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Anthills of the Savannah Literary Heritage & History

This Study Guide consists of approximately 72 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Anthills of the Savannah.
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Literary Heritage

Typical of African cultures, Nigeria's storytelling comes from a long oral tradition. This tradition allowed generations to benefit from African literature despite widespread illiteracy. Folktales, legends, verse, myths, and proverbs were preserved in the memories of the people and communicated by performance or simple recitation. As in other societies, myths in African culture explain the wonders of nature, provide creation narratives, and relate the activities of divine beings. Legends, on the other hand, generally describe the actions of people and often commemorate heroes. The purpose of oral literature is not only to entertain, but also to instruct and honor.

The strong oral tradition in Africa is a major influence for twentieth-century Nigerian writers such as Amos Tutuola, Chinua Achebe, and Nobel Prize-winner Wole Soyinka. Achebe, for example, writes in the traditional novel form in a personalized way that draws from the deep resources of his Nigerian heritage. In...

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This section contains 192 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Anthills of the Savannah Study Guide
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Anthills of the Savannah from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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