Sundiata: An Epic of Old Maliby D. T. Niane
Retold by generations of griots-the guardians of African culture-this oral tradition has been handed down from thirteenth century and captures all the mystery and majesty of medieval African kingship. It is an epic tale-part history, part legend-which should rank alongside the 'Iliad' and the 'Odyssey' as one of the world's great adventure stories.
- Longman Publishing Group
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A great book A really good book, I love the story
Had to read for a college ADW course, but was a good read.
The book, Sundiata an Epic of Old Mali, is small read for students, but will give them a detailed review of Sundiata¿s life. I understand that this book has its purpose, but I would not want to read it again. It did not grab my attention in the first few pages, and did not keep my attention through out the book. If I were to recommend this book, I would recommend it for middle school students because in high school, students would not find this book appealing. I do have to say that the author did a good job of stating their purpose. D. T. Niane did report on the life of Sundiata to show that Sundiata was an important part of history. Niane told how Sundiata founded Mali. This entire book was what I thought it would be¿ a biography about Sundiata and nothing more.
Sundiata - An Epic of Old Mali provides a heroic story of Sundiata, who is destined to become a future Malian King. However, Sundiata must defeat the current king, who is an evil tyrant purely interested in gaining money and oppressing others. This epic offers more than an entertaining story it provides a lot of background information, which reveals much about Malian culture and overall African culture during the time of Sundiata 'close to 1230 CE'. For example, the idea of ¿jinns¿ is seen constantly throughout the epic, and jinns are related with Islam and culture. This displays that Mali was an Islamic based civilization. The author of this epic, D.T. Niane, composed this epic by listening to the stories of a Griot 'an adviser who reveals historical information of ancestors' regarding Sundiata. The stories were passed down generation to generation purely by oral tradition. This also reveals the importance of oral tradition in African culture during the time of the Mali Empire. D.T. Niane does a stellar job delivering this epic. He accomplishes his task, which is to inform others about this amazing story in Malian History and its significance to how the entire continent of Africa is shaped in the long run. This book is highly recommended to those interested in African History and epic stories, such as the Iliad and Odyssey.