The Liminal Novel: Studies in the Francophone-African Novel as Bildungsroman

The Liminal Novel: Studies in the Francophone-African Novel as Bildungsroman

by Wangari Wa Nyatetu-Waigwa


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Critical studies of African literature, especially those treating colonial-era novels, have typically taken the form of thematic analyses. In an important departure from this trend, The Liminal Novel concentrates instead on how meaning is achieved in three African novels of the 1950s - Camara Laye's L'enfant noir, Hamidou Kane's L'aventure ambigue, and Mongo Beti's Mission terminée. The analysis offered here is innovative on at least two counts. First, appropriating the anthropological rite of passage model, it argues convincingly for a reclassification of the three novels as members of a subset within the genre of Bildungsroman. Second, while illuminating the artistic dimensions of these works through careful scrutiny of imagery, setting, and discourse, The Liminal Novel also provides a new and valuable tool for reading many colonial coming-of-age novels.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780820421681
Publisher: Lang, Peter Publishing, Incorporated
Publication date: 02/01/1997
Series: American University Studies Series: Series 18: African Literature , #6
Pages: 134
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

About the Author

The Author: Wangari wa Nyatetu-Waigwa is an assistant professor of French language and literature at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. She received her B.A. from the Université de Dijon, France and her Ph.D. in French literature from the University of Utah, Salt Lake City. Her current research focuses on African and Caribbean women writers.

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