- Editor's Comments
Most of the articles in this issue of Research in African Literatures are devoted to selected papers presented at two African Literature Association (ALA) conferences: the 2002 conference in San Diego, California, and the 2004 meeting in Madison, Wisconsin. With the tenth anniversary of the Rwanda genocide barely behind us, Research in African Literatures welcomes the opportunity provided by the 2002 ALA Conference to contribute to the various critical discourses on political violence in Africa, by devoting space to the reflections of literary critics on the ways in which this subject has haunted and shaped the creative imaginary of recent African writers. All but the last article in the cluster on violence, an independent submission, are drawn from some of the papers presented at the panel organized on the topic by Kenneth Harrow and Richard Priebe at the San Diego meeting. The second set of papers—grouped in the Forum section, and exploring from a theoretical point of view the ancient problem (as it applies to African literatures) of mimesis, the complex articulations and interplay between literary text and social reality, and the configurations of the latter in the former—is taken from the panel on literary theory organized by Tejumola Olaniyan at the Wisconsin conference. Research in African Literatures wishes to thank the conveners of these panels for coordinating these contributions to this issue and will be pleased to receive for publication in future "Forum sections" short, considered responses to and comments on some of the issues raised by the material presented here.