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Shaken Wisdom: Irony and Meaning in Postcolonial African Fiction (Hardback)
  • Shaken Wisdom: Irony and Meaning in Postcolonial African Fiction (Hardback)

Shaken Wisdom: Irony and Meaning in Postcolonial African Fiction (Hardback)

Hardback 178 Pages / Published: 30/09/2011
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In her focus on irony and meaning in postcolonial African fiction, Gloria Nne Onyeoziri refers to an internal subversion of the discourse of the wise and the powerful, a practice that has played multiple roles in the circulation of knowledge, authority, and opinion within African communities; in the interpretation of colonial and postcolonial experience; and in the ongoing resistance to tyrannies in African societies. But irony is always reversible and may be used to question the oppressed as well as the oppressor, shaking all presumptions of wisdom. Although the author cites numerous African writers, she selects six works by Chinua Achebe, Ahmadou Kourouma, and Calixthe Beyala for her primary analysis.

Modern Language Initiative

Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813931869
Number of pages: 178
Weight: 358 g
Dimensions: 231 x 152 x 15 mm


"Shaken Wisdom is a delight to read. Onyeoziri's mastery of African cultural practices and oral traditions, linguistic theory, and African literature is truly impressive. She brings together African authors from the early post-independence period to the present by focusing on their use of irony, which unites them across geographic location, generations, and ethnic origins. While not claiming that there is a specific ironic tradition that is uniquely African, Onyeoziri makes the case for the double-voiced verbal stance inherent in irony as being particularly important to African writers. Well-written, well-argued, and well-researched, the book brings a very special set of insights to African fiction, linguistic theories about irony, and gender studies."

--Laura Rice, Oregon State University, author of Of Irony and Empire

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