African Oral Literature as a Tool for National Development: An Examination of Tiv Oral Poetry

Terlumun Kerekaa


This paper surveys the significant contributions that African oral literature has made as a tool for national development. The presentation uses Tiv oral poetry as the major specimen for examination. Renditions of different bards as they border on the subject in question in Tiv land were examined. The study particularly projected the relevance of Tiv oral poetry in the context of the modern society which transcends the traditional thematic preoccupations. It located the significance of oral poetry as a veritable tool for championing the struggle for socio-economic and political change. The research also re-examined the primordial image of African oral literature as projected by Western scholars. It recommended that such erroneous knowledge must be excised for African oral literature to take its rightful place among literatures of the world. Finally, the research hopes to provoke other scholars to study the other aspects of Tiv orature as tools for national development.

DOI: 10.7176/JLLL/57-03

Publication date:June 30th 2019

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