“Francophone African Writers and Anthropology” a panel at the 2014 MLA Convention in Chicago, co-sponsored by the African Literature division and the 20th century French Literature division.
The engagement of French-speaking African writers with anthropology in the 20th-century is a noticeably widespread and diverse phenomenon. One need only think of authors such as Paul Hazoumé, Léopold Sédar Senghor, Amadou Hampaté Bâ, Fily Dabo Sissoko, or Yambo Ouolouguem: all of these figures either wrote about anthropology or created literary works that were anthropological in nature.
This trend goes against a generally accepted historical narrative which too often conceives the relationship of African authors with anthropology as a rebellion of the “Native” against a violent and reifying discourse created by the West. In Francophone Africa, however, the relationship seems more complex; it is based on parody, subversion, and re-appropriation rather than on mere rejection.
Taking Francophone Africa as our geographic point of departure, this panel is devoted to the study of literary appropriations of anthropological discourses and literary perspectives on anthropological forms of knowledge production.
300-word abstract by March 15, 2013, short CV to: