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African Literature

             For a long time, Africa has been viewed by many foreigners as an inferior continent. All one has to do is read any history book to find proof of that. As a result, the same people also view African literature as substandard material. The fact is African literature is entertaining. Used by some to be critical of African traditions, African literature is used by many people to celebrate certain aspects of the African culture.
             It seems that one reoccurring theme in all of the literature I have read thus far is that of destiny. Destiny appears to be an integral part of African beliefs about the world and life in general. We see evidence of this in almost every novel. D.T. Niane touched on this subject in his book Sundiata when he wrote, "but what can one do against destiny? Nothing. Man, under the influence of certain illusions, thinks he can alter the course which God has mapped out, but everything falls into a higher order which he barely understands."(p.22). .
             Religion is a major part of African culture. As a result, the people tend to believe in "God's Plan", and perceive what happens in life, as part of the plan, their destiny. There is abundant talk of destiny in African literature, and Sundiata is the epitome of that. On page 29, again we see talk of destiny, "Fear enters the heart of him who does not know his destiny, whereas Sundiata knew that he was striding towards a great destiny.".
             Destiny is something which its mere existence can be argued. Through the power of science and technology, modern man believes it can modify destiny, assuming they believed in destiny to begin with. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, or else what would be the point of life? African writers have used their literature as a means of expressing their faith in destiny. .
             Niane sprinkles talk of destiny throughout the novel. "The children were sorry to leave Wagadou for they had made many friends, but their destiny lay elsewhere and they had to go away.

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