e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

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‘Inscription’ as Speaking for Women: African Women Writers and their Writing Form

Shalini Nadaswaran

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 28, Issue 2, June 2020

Keywords: African literature, African women writers, epistolary, inscription, third generation

Published on: 26 June 2020

African Literature has grown exponentially in the past 50 years, with key literary giants as pioneers establishing its literary field. Even in present research and scholarship, African writings have helped inform and articulate modes of literary and theoretical discourse. Even more so, early African women’s works (Flora Nwapa, Buchi Emecheta, Ama Ata Aidoo and Mariama Ba), were said to have laid the foundations for contemporary African women writers to continue ‘speaking’ boldly for Africa and its women. My article argues that the bold strides taken by early writers Buchi Emecheta and Mariama Ba through the epistolary form, were fundamental for contemporary third-generation African women’s writing that continued this legacy of inscription. Sade Adeniran’s Imagine This (2007), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus (2004) and Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani’s I do not come to you by chance (2009) are selections of works whose literary topos employs the epistolary forms of letters, diary entries and emails as ways to articulate the nuances experienced in Africa. Drawing on the similar form of the epistle used by Emecheta and Ba, the results of the analysis of Adeniran, Adichie and Nwaubani’s works will inform us of the ways in which pioneering writings by African women were trailblazing to the quest of African female inscription.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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