oa Kano Studies - Christian missionaries and Hausa literature in Nigeria, 1840-1890: a critical evaluation

Volume 1, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0567-4840



This paper sets out to highlight a key aspect of Barth�s textual practice and writing strategy, which the historical authorities have either ignored or failed to conceptualize adequately -Barth�s debt to the post-Enlightenment imaginary. The distinctive categorial premises of this literary tradition are the rhetorical apprehension of the exotic Other within representational and symbolic narrative, and of the landscape as writable and aesthetic (or anti-aesthetic) property, via the explorer-writer�s reflexive, expository and performative voice, or point of view. It is argued below that Barth�s text was composed not from a scientific, or disinterested, observation, but from literary, rhetorical and aesthetic notions, which had themselves been mediated by the ideological frames of the 19th century civilization mission, namely racism and imperialism.

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