دراسات
Volume 4, Numéro 2, Pages 250-258

Individualism In Both The African And The Western Novels

Authors : Nebbou Abdelkader .

Abstract

The novel is a literary imaginative work of art concerned with human experience. The novel in West Africa was unknown in the traditional society, which depended much on oral literature, i.e., oral plays and poetry (Seymour, 1985, p 6). With the growing pace of Western education in colonies in the late 1940s, the novel became a very important medium bearing the authors’ records of their sadness and reaction towards what was going on in their societies. Although the proper African novel in English is of English origin, it has preserved the author’s social status and his contribution to communal life as a part of a corporate-whole unaffected . On the contrary, the Western novel, from which the African novel emerged, has reflected the Western author’s individualism to account for the novelist’s detachment from his ‘ruined’ society and his non-conformity to it . To illustrate this view I will take Chinua Achebe and Wole Soyinka from Nigeria as counterpart to Kate Chopin and T.S. Eliot from the USA. in their novels: A Man of the People (1965), The Interpreters (1965), The Awakening (1899), and The Wasteland (1922) respectively.

Keywords

West African novel, Western author, individualism, social groups , Achebe and Soyinka, Kate Chopin and T.S. Eliot