We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE
OR

The Cameroonian Novel of English Expression. An Introduction

An Introduction

Shadrach A. Ambanasom

Publication Year: 2009

Initially considered something of a black sheep within the Anglophone Cameroon literary genres, the Anglophone novel has gradually grown to carve out a respectable niche for itself in the Anglophone Cameroon sub-system, imposing itself in a way that makes it impossible for critics to ignore it. Now a vibrant genre, it even threatens to overtake drama and poetry, both of which have enjoyed more critical attention. This book is a study of how Anglophone Cameroon has contributed in extending the possibilities of the novel as a literary form, and of some of the established conventions necessary for a fruitful evaluation of the growing body of the Cameroonian novel in English. In this eclectic and compelling book, Ambanasom sets out to achieve three primary objectives: to introduce the reader to the extensive body of Cameroonian novels in English, to re-examine the distorting and limiting criteria upon which the critical assessment of the Cameroonian novel in English has so far been based, and to bridge the widening chasm between literary theory and actual critical practice. To achieve these objectives, Ambanasom begins by elaborating an alternative and flexible theoretical framework which he christens the 'Socio-Artistic Approach' and which, according to him, is 'concerned with both a text's thematic, moral, cultural or ideological issues, on the one hand, and its central literary analysis, on the other.' He then proceeds to use this new critical framework to examine twenty-seven major Cameroonian novels in English. There are critical voices, already emerging within the Anglophone Cameroonian literary circles, calling for rigorous teaching and practice of theory in the interpretation of literary works, setting in motion a critical discourse. Such a call is salutary, and welcome. Those university lecturers whose responsibility it is to teach theoretical courses should take this call very seriously, moving from theory to hands-on practice. This book is Ambanasom's contribution to that critical debate.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page

pdf iconDownload PDF (45.2 KB)
 

Copyright Page

pdf iconDownload PDF (117.9 KB)
 

Dedication

pdf iconDownload PDF (70.5 KB)
pp. vii-

read more

Acknowledgement

pdf iconDownload PDF (72.0 KB)
pp. ix-

Given the monumental problems and professional engagements with which I was encumbered during the final phase of this project, completing it against all odds was nothing short of a miracle. Consequently, I am eternally grateful to the Almighty God for...

read more

Foreword

pdf iconDownload PDF (73.0 KB)
pp. xi-xii

It would be difficult today to find any consensus about either an accepted critical approach to prose fiction, or an established body of the Cameroonian novel of English Expression to which such an approach should be applied. This study is an...

read more

Preface

pdf iconDownload PDF (72.8 KB)
pp. xiii-xiv

Initially considered something of a black sheep within the Anglophone Cameroon literary genres, the Anglophone novel has gradually grown to carve out a respectable niche for itself in the Anglophone Cameroon subsystem, imposing itself in a way that...

Part One: The Theoretical Framework

read more

Introduction

pdf iconDownload PDF (75.1 KB)
pp. 3-6

In November 2005 the government of the bilingual Republic of Cameroon conducted a general population census. Although by 2007 the results of the exercise had not been released, unofficial estimates put the population of Cameroon at 17 million. Out of this...

read more

1. The Socio-Artistic Approach

pdf iconDownload PDF (134.6 KB)
pp. 7-31

In reviewing literature on African literary criticism, around the last quarter of the 20th century, the present writer discovered roughly three critical tendencies in matters of valuation. The first tendency consists of critics like Charles Larson and Eustace Palmer...

read more

2. Enlightened Eclecticism

pdf iconDownload PDF (96.0 KB)
pp. 33-43

Literature is the site where ideologies collide, the location for the dramatisation of conflicting worldviews. Consequently, the exploration of the sociological dimension of the Socio-Artistic Approach will often lead to the examination of ideological or...

Part Two: Practical Analysis of Novels

read more

3. Encounter With Europe

pdf iconDownload PDF (149.4 KB)
pp. 47-76

It is a truism, in the history of African literature, that many early African writers whose novels are set in the colonial past were writing against a backdrop of negative Hegelian stereotypical ideas of Africa, victim of the twin evils of slavery and colonialism...

read more

4. Anti-Heroes and Societal Crooks

pdf iconDownload PDF (171.0 KB)
pp. 77-112

Unlike the three novelists in the previous chapter who are concerned with the theme of cultural conflict between the Cameroonian way of life and the European civilization, the imaginative writers examined in this chapter...

read more

5. Women and Sexuality

pdf iconDownload PDF (134.2 KB)
pp. 113-136

If the novelists discussed in Chapter Four are generally pre-occupied with the dark underbelly of the Cameroonian society, those in this chapter are concerned with women, particularly with hetero-sexual intimacy between a man and a woman, a relationship...

read more

6. Opposing Visions of Feminism

pdf iconDownload PDF (117.1 KB)
pp. 137-153

A literary fact about Cameroonian imaginative writing of English expression is that it is generally phallic. For instance, a feminist reading of the Anglophone Cameroonian novels will reveal that nearly all of them, by male writers, embody embedded biases...

read more

7. Alternative Ideological Visions

pdf iconDownload PDF (201.7 KB)
pp. 155-200

The Cameroonian creative writers of English expression have adopted an imperial language, English, and the novelistic art form to serve the Cameroonian vision. As we have seen in the previous chapters, through their works, these writers are exploring...

read more

Conclusion

pdf iconDownload PDF (72.6 KB)
pp. 201-203

Until quite recently in Cameroon, discussions of Cameroon Anglophone literature have been dominated by interest in poetry and drama, particularly drama, with the novel largely neglected. But as we have seen in this study, the recent proliferation of novels...

Biographical Notes on the Novelists

pdf iconDownload PDF (77.3 KB)
pp. 205-209

Works Cited

pdf iconDownload PDF (87.4 KB)
pp. 211-217

Back Cover

pdf iconDownload PDF (626.1 KB)
 


E-ISBN-13: 9789956716340
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956558698

Page Count: 232
Publication Year: 2009