Fall 2014 16:730:660:01; Index 20771 T (4:30PM-7:10)

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Fall 2014 16:730:660:01; Index 20771 T (4:30PM-7:10)
Fall 2014
Ethics & Literature: Women and Writing: Women Writers of Africa
16:730:660:01; Index 20771 T (4:30PM-7:10)
CML-101; CAC
Cross-Listed 16:016:502:01 - - 01:013:401:01 --16:195:504:01; Index 18910
Instructor: Alidou
This course focuses on African women’s writings from a variety of cultural, linguistic, and
regional areas of Africa and the Diaspora. We will use an intercultural approach to analyze the
literary works of African women, exploring the socio-cultural and political landscapes that have
shaped their works, and how their works, in turn, are a reflection of the (pre-colonial, colonial
and post-colonial) conditions of their production. We will examine the role of oral tradition and
multiple literacies in shaping modern African women’s literature as well as the impact of modern
technology in their literary production and dissemination. Special attention will be devoted to the
intersection of race, power, class and gender in the analysis of the texts covered in class,
demonstrating how the creative writings of African women often constitute a different voice
about Africanity. The texts give testaments to women’s quest to re-imagine/reshape the world we
share – to reinterpret history, re-read culture, reconfigure the structures that define female and
male roles, and reconstruct identities. The reading list will include contemporary African
women’s short stories edited by Ama Ata Aidoo, novels written by Mariama Ba, Fatou Diome,
Leila Aboulela, Fatima Mernissi, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, memoir by Nobel laureate Dr.
Wangari Maathai, poetry by Abena Busia, and selection from the groundbreaking and awardwinning Women Writing Africa (four Volumes). Documentaries and films made by African
women or depicting African women’s lives will be part of the assignments available on reserves
at Douglass media center. In addition, we will read and discuss theoretical works on
African/Black women writers by literary and feminist critics such as Abena Busia, Obiema
Nnaemeka, Renee Larrier, Carole Boyce Davis, Eileen Julien, Abena Busia, Ogunyemi,
Chikwenye Okonjo and Irene Assiba D’Almeida. These materials will be put on sakai.
Course Requirements: Weekly short reaction paper to weekly readings to share with course participants
on sakai; oral presentation of assigned readings; a 10 page essay on a topic of your choice; and a final 1520 page seminar paper.
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