New PDF release: A Mouth Sweeter Than Salt: An African Memoir

By Toyin Omoyeni Falola

ISBN-10: 0472031325

ISBN-13: 9780472031320

ISBN-10: 0472114018

ISBN-13: 9780472114016

"A appropriate coming-of-age tale so filled with bright colour and emotion, the phrases appear to dance off the web page. yet this isn't basically Falola's memoir; it's an account of a brand new kingdom entering being and the tensions and negotiations that at all times take place among urban and state, culture and modernity, women and men, wealthy and terrible. a very appealing book."-Robin D. G. Kelley "More than a private memoir, this booklet is a wealthy minihistory of latest Nigeria recorded in scrumptious aspect by way of a perceptive eyewitness who grew up on the crossroads of many cultures."-Bernth LindforsA Mouth Sweeter Than Salt gathers the tales and reflections of the early years of Toyin Falola, the grand historian of Africa and one of many maximum sons of Ibadan, the impressive Yoruba city-state in Nigeria.Redefining the autobiographical style altogether, Falola miraculously weaves jointly own, historic, and communal tales, besides political and cultural advancements within the interval instantly previous and following Nigeria's independence, to offer us a special and enduring photograph of the Yoruba within the mid-twentieth century. this can be really a literary memoir, informed in language wealthy with proverbs, poetry, music, and humor.Falola's memoir is much greater than the tale of 1 man's early life reviews; quite, he provides us with the riches of a complete tradition and community-its heritage, traditions, pleasures, mysteries, loved ones preparations, varieties of strength, struggles, and changes.

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Sample text

But this is not the Oyo that many know as the metropole of that empire of genius, the Oyo that spread so fast and vast. Its king, the Alafin, was so powerful that modern military dictators such as General Sanni Abacha, who came much later to rule the much bigger kingdom of Nigeria, would envy him. The Oyo add “Eku, eku” to their Pele. Like Pele, one cannot stand on a street corner of Oyo without hearing Eku many times. It actually sounds better than Pele, and I traveled to Oyo one afternoon in the 1990s just to hear it.

Wondered one of them. They probably thought so. Those in trouble at Ibadan, including even chiefs, had sought exile when in trouble. Modern Ibadan even encouraged voluntary exile. It was offered even to their prominent chiefs. Should they refuse, the other chiefs would order the public to loot their compounds. When the compounds became empty of beds and chairs, of food and clothes, of goats and sheep, they could set them on fire. Then exile would follow, and the next words that would trickle in would be those of suicide.

On the day, the big day that they had been prepared to expect, they all trooped to a stadium to perform, sing, display gymnastic skills, and affirm their loyalty to the queen. In the late 1950s, I paid my dues, saluting the queen, whom only a few people had seen even in a photograph. Then came the country’s independence, and the worship of the queen was converted to the worship of Nigeria. Reciting the national anthem was part of the school rituals, and everybody knew the first stanza until they decided to change everything in the 1970s when the brain had lost its sharpness for storing fresh lines.

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A Mouth Sweeter Than Salt: An African Memoir by Toyin Omoyeni Falola


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