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Fictions of African Dictatorship

Cultural Representations of Postcolonial Power

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Edited By Charlotte Baker and Hannah Grayson

Fictions of African Dictatorship examines the fictional representation of the African dictator and the performance of dictatorship across genres. The volume includes contributions focusing on literature, theatre and film, all of which examine the relationship between the fictional and the political. Among the questions the contributors ask: what are the implications of reading a novel for its historical content or accuracy? How does the dictator novel interrogate ideas of veracity? How is power performed and ridiculed? How do different writers reflect on questions of authority in the postcolony, and what are the effects on their stories and modes of narration? This volume untangles some of the intricate workings of dictatorial power in the postcolony, through twelve close readings of works of fiction. It interrogates the intersections between real and literary space, exploring censorship, political critique and creative resistance. Insights into a wide range of lesser known texts and contexts make this volume an original and insightful contribution to scholarship on representations of dictatorship.

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Index

Abacha, General Sani 180

Aboul-Ela, Housam 39

Achebe, Chinua

Anthills of the Savannah 175, 200

Things Fall Apart 208

adab (Arabic literature) 1489

Aden, Kaha Mohamed 239

‘1982 fuga da casa’ 2412

Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi

Purple Hibiscus 1789

Africa

dictators in see dictators; dictatorship

dismissed from world history 63

Africa Is a Country (blog) 63

Agamben, Giorgio 63

State of Exception 63

Al-Aswany, Alaa

The Yacoubian Building 3940

al-Ghitani, Gamal

al-Zaynī Barakāt 7, 39, 14253

fictitious historical documents in 149, 150, 151

and language, power of 1479

and Nasser 1445

political repression in 144

surveillance and spies in 144, 1457, 149, 151

time in 1512

Al-Hākim (caliph) 6, 40

in Himmich’s Le Calife de l’épouvante 41, 467, 4850

al-Sadat, Anwar 141

Allen, Roger 43, 141, 143

Anansi (trickster character) 90

Anderson, Benedict

‘imagined citizens’ 187

Andrade, Susan 179

Ansart, Pierre

Idéologies, conflits et pouvoir 126, 132

apartheid state 200

Arabic language see adab; poetry, Arabic

Arendt, Hannah

on totalitarianism 209, 210

Asians

in Kenya 105, 106

Ashcroft, Bill

on ‘postcolonial utopianism’ 189

Askar, Ahmed Omar 8

Sharks and Soldiers 201, 21012

Asturias, Miguel Angél

El Señor Presidente 378

Awady, Didier 64

Bahri, Deepika

on the ‘aesthetic’ 193

Bakhtin, Mikhail

and the carnivalesque 79, 88

Ballantyne, Tony 183

Ballets Africains, Les (Guinea) 21

Banda, Hastings Kamuzu 9, 215

and literary censorship 222

memories of 216

and sexual propriety 218

Baron, Beth 146

Barre, General Mohamed Siad 9, 2013, 20810

in Askar’s stories 21113

autocratic rule of 2356

cultural and political resistance to 237

in Farah’s Sardines 208

in Italian postcolonial literature 23649

and literature 236, 2456, 249

nickname 236

Bastos, Augusto Roa 38

Baudrillard, Jean

theory of simulacra 845

Bayart, Jean-François 1023, 104

Bekolo, Jean-Pierre 6

film-making career of 623

Le Complot d’Aristote 63

Le Président 57, 624, 6273

Bell, Catherine 100

Bhabha, Homi 188

Bidima, Jean-Godefroy

on political life and symbolism 82

Big Man

concept of 176

and ‘Leaders for Life’ syndrome 578, 64

Bikoko, Jean-Marc 67

Billy Billy 63

Bishop, Cécile 85

Biya, Paul 6

dictatorial power of 59, 61

‘necropolitics’ of 71

subject of Le Président 57

Bofane, In Koli Jean 4, 6

Congo Inc., le testament de Bismarck 834, 86, 89, 91, 92

Mathématiques congolaises 823, 84, 91

and postcolonial dictatorship 80, 81, 94

trickster characters in 90

Booth, Alan 157

Boyers, Robert 45, 47

Brioni, Simone

The Somali Within 247

Burton, Antoinette 183

Byatt, A. S. 43, 54

Cameroun: Autopsie d’une Indépendence 72

cannibalism 123

Carpentier, Alejo 38

Cawl, Faarax J. M.

Ignorance is the Enemy of Love 237

Cazenave, Odile 79

Célérier, Patricia 79

child-soldiers 124, 200

Chirambo, Reuben 216, 222

Compaoré, Blaise 59, 62

Conrad, Joseph

Lord Jim and The Wizard of the Crow 111

Dangarembga, Tsitsi

Nervous Conditions 178

Darraj, Faisal 151

Davis, Lennard J.

Resisting Novels 147

Deleuze, Gilles, and Guattari, Félix 2478

democracy in Africa

suspended 589

dictator novel

as genre 23, 4, 200

see also dictatorship, African

dictators

bodies of 177, 178

contempt of for their subjects 124

in fiction 38, 1758, 200, 21113

as gods 1257

and patrirachy 207

propaganda by 1303

representations of 34, 5, 11819, 175

dictatorship

African 1, 34, 578, 60, 118, 1758

and animals 11819, 124

definitions of 38

and myth(-making) 11718, 126

in the postcolonial state 801

and religion 208

in twenty-first century 199

see also Latin America, dictatorship in

divination

rituals of 10810

Djimili, Richard

139 …The Last Predators 60

Dlamini, Zweli Martin 171

Doe, Samuel 123

Donnell, Allison

on sexualities in Caribbean literature 220

Draz, Céza Kassem 141, 143, 144, 152

Durand, Gilbert

on myths 82

Ebewo, Patrick

on Ncwala 16970

Echevarría, Roberto González

on dictators 1, 47

The Voice of the Masters 38, 1478

Egypt

fiction in 3940

repression in 1412

El Hosseiny, Alya 7

Eldoret

and Eldares in The Wizard of the Crow 1034

Eliade, Mircea 117, 127

Epifano, Angie 5

Erdoğan, Recep

as dictator 199

Esty, Joshua

on excrement 88

Evans-Pritchard, E. E. 90

Eyadéma, Gnassingbé

assassinates Sylvanus Olympio 134

as model for Koyaga in En attendant le vote des bêtes sauvages 133, 134

Fanon, Franz

Black Skin, White Masks 109

The Wretched of the Earth 71

Farah, Nuruddin 8, 200

‘Blood in the Sun’ trilogy 201

Close Sesame 209, 246

From a Crooked Rib 201, 246

and dictatorship (of Siad Barre) 205, 207, 2467

Maps 178

A Naked Needle 200, 201, 246

Sardines 206, 207, 208

Secrets 201

Sweet and Sour Milk 206, 207, 246

Variations on the Theme of an African Dictatorship trilogy 3, 200

‘Why I Write’ 2045

Fazel, Shirin Ramzanali 239

‘Mukulaal’ 2423

Nuvole sull’Equatore (Clouds on the Equator) 2434

Felter, Claire 58

fiction

dictators in see dictator novel

and history 5

Focus on Swaziland 169

food

and obesity 88, 89

Foucault, Michel 78

on crime as attack on sovereign 181, 187

on female sexuality 2256

History of Sexuality 21516

on sexuality and power 218, 226

Freud, Sigmund

Totem et Tabou 119

Fuente, Carlos 38

Fukuyama, Francis

on socio-political evolution 199

Garane, Garane 239

Il latte è buono (Milk is Good) 243, 244

Gaye, Marvin

song banned in Malawi 218

Genette, Gérard

and hypertextuality 150

Gerrig, Richard 108

Geschiere, Peter 102, 104

Giroux, Henry

on necropower 60

Goytisolo, Juan 48

griots 69

Guinea

colonial 15, 1617

‘demystification’ programme in 1920

see also Sékou Touré, Ahmed

Hargeisa (Somalia)

bombing of 201, 203

Harlow, Barbara

Resistance Literature 147

Hassan, Muhammad Abdille 212

healing

rituals of 1089, 110

Hegel, G. W. F.

on Africa 63

Himmich, Bensalem 56

Al-‘Alaama (The Polymath) 42

biography 42

and concept of the novel 434

Hadha Al-Andalusi! (A Muslim Suicide) 42

Majnūn al-hukm (Le Calife de l’épouvante) 56, 4054

despotism attacked in 49, 512

madness in 467

parody in 489

self-constitution as escape in 524

Houphouët-Boigny, Félix 1356

Huliaras, Asrris 238

hunters

employment of by presidents 123, 124

Hutin, Serge

on propaganda 1312

Ibn Iyās

Badā’i‘ al-Zuhūr 14950

Ibn Khaldūn 42

Ibn Sab’in 42

Ibrahim, Son’allah 141

Italy

and Somali literature in Italian 247, 2489

Somali refugees in 239

Jibril, Hawa 238

Joseph-Vilain, Mélanie 186, 190

Julien, Nadia

on symbolism of hare/rabbit 121

Juraga, Dubravka 216

Kabbah, Ahmad Tejan 123

Kaigai, Ezekiel

on sexuality and embodiment in Malawian literature 2201

Kantorowicz, Ernst

on kings’ bodies 181

Kenya

Asians in 105, 106

position of women in 107

witchcraft in 105, 106

Kenyatta, Jomo 105

and Africanization 108

Keresztesi, Rita 6

Khalidi, Tarif 148

King-Aribisala, Karen 18990

The Hangman’s Game 1756, 17989

as children’s game 17980

control, theme of, in 179, 1823, 1848, 190

and dictator fiction 192

and Nigerian politics 180, 188, 193

pregnancy in 1901

presidential figure in 1801

Three Blind Mice (novel-within-a-novel) in 1813, 1846

women as objects in 191

as ‘mother’ of her characters 190

Kourouma, Ahmadou 4, 7

Allah n’est pas obligé 7, 123

cannibalism in 123

names of real people in 136

dictator figures in novels of 118, 1346, 137

En attendant le vote des bêtes sauvages 7, 1289, 175

childhoods of presidents in 1212

invincibility of presidents in 1223, 1234

presidential propaganda in 1303

totemic animals in 11822

on magic 136

Kovaç, Nikola 93

Kubayanda, Josaphat B. 2

on decolonization 43

on dictators in literature 2, 37, 39

Kuenen, Eline 6

Kumalo, Simangaliso 170

Kunene, Mazisi 155

Kuper, Hilda 157, 158, 168

Latin America, dictatorship in

and novels 12, 378, 200

Lazarus, Neil

on ‘realist writing’ 192

Lerner, Max

Dictatorship in the Modern World 204

Lewis, Desiree

on ‘conflation of power and sexuality’ 226

Linz, Juan J. 38

Llosa, Mario Vargas

The Feast of the Goat 200

Longhurst, Robyn

on politicization of the body 183

Lopes, Henri 856

Le Pleurer-rire 86, 175

Lori, Laura 245

Lucien, Bindi Ngouté 7

Ly, Ibrahima 89

Lyamlahy, Khalid 56

Mabanckou, Alain 6

Mémoires de porc-épic (Memoirs of a Porcupine) 89, 901, 93

and postcolonial dictatorship 80, 81, 945

and postcolonial elections 85

trickster characters in 90

Verre Cassé (Broken Glass) 84, 87, 93

Macmillan Publishers (Swaziland)

and Sibanda’s ‘Sagila Semnikati’ 160, 162, 163, 1667

Macron, Emmanuel

on Africa 64

Mahfouz, Naguib

Children of Our Alley 39

Malawi

AIDS in 217

under Banda 21617

censorship in 218

Decency in Dress Act 217

Mbumba culture in 218

oppression of women in 21819

and sexuality in fiction 221

women in literary productions in 219221

Mamba, Sibusiso

‘Sagila’ (adaptation of Sibanda’s ‘Sagila Semnikati’) 156, 160, 167

marabouts

employment of by presidents 1234

Mari, Lorenzo 9

Mariam, Mengistu Haile 235

Márquez, Gabriel García 38

The Autumn of the Patriarch 200

Masuku, Mario 168

Mbembe, Achille

on ‘aesthetics of vulgarity’ 81, 205

on ‘banality of power’ 157

on the Big Man 176

and the carnivalesque 7980

and ‘necropolitics’ 163

on ‘necropower’ 59, 712

on postcolonial power 79, 112, 170

On the Postcolony 23

on public executions 81

Mehrez, Samia 141, 144, 145, 149, 159

Meyer, Stefan G. 1434

Miller, Christopher

on African nationalism 1, 8

Mkamanga, Emily

on Banda’s regime and Malawian women 219, 226

Mogadishu (Somalia) 203, 206

Moi, Daniel Arap

populist policies of 1045

and The Wizard of the Crow 7, 99, 103

Moolla, F. Fiona 8

Morin, Didier

on Somali postcolonial literature 2367, 239

Moto, Francis

on women in Malawian literature 220

Motsa, Zodwa

on Ncwala 169

Moudileno, Lydie

Parades postcoloniales 81

Mswati I (of Swaziland) 157

Mswati III (of Swaziland) 157

Mtenje, Asante Lucy 89

Muresan, Maria 67

myth

and dictatorial power 11718, 1267

Mzizi, Joshua 170

Nasser, Gamal Abdel- 141

spy system of 1445, 147

nationalism

African 1

Arab 141

Guinean 14, 22

Somali 237

Ncwala ceremony (Swaziland) 156, 1578, 160, 162, 1678

and censorship 16971

Ndīgīrīgī, Gīchingiri

on African dictatorship 177, 193

on The Wizard of the Crow 101

Nganang, Patrice 2

Ng’ombe, James 9

Sugarcane with Salt 9, 215, 2212

female characters in 223, 22931, 232

story of 223

Ngong, Benjamin 25

Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o

The Wizard of the Crow 3, 67, 99114, 175, 200

democracy as theme in 99100, 113

‘Marching to Heaven’ project in 99, 103, 104, 111

ritual in 11314

Ruler in 99, 101, 102, 1078, 111, 112, 113

sorcery in 101, 103, 104, 1057, 108

see also witch doctor

obesity

as marker for status 88, 89

Ogbeide, Victor O.

on Banda’s Malawi 222

Ouyang, Wen-chin

on Himmich’s Majnūn al-hukm 44, 46, 47, 52

Owona Nguini, Eric Mathias 68

Parti démocratique de Guinée (PDG) 17, 20, 212, 323

poetry, Arabic

and orality 147

Poovey, Mary 178

postcolonial societies

arbitrary elections in 85

male domination in 8788

obscenity and sexual violence in 867, 945

symbolic elements of 82

theatricality in 812

women’s status in 88

Proglio, Gabriele

on Barre’s dictatorship 236

PUDEMO (People’s United Democratic Movement; Swaziland) 1689

Qasem, ‘Abdel Hakim 141

Reich, Wilhelm

on patriarchy and dictatorship 207

resistance literature 147

Revolutionary United Front (RUF; Sierra Leone) 183

Ross, Hester

on Malawian literature 21920, 222

Rulfo, Juan 38

Salih, Fakhri 143

Sankoh, Foday 123

Sarkozy, Nicolas

on Africa 64

Saro-Wiwa, Ken 180

Sassou-Nguesso, Denis 85

Sékou Touré, Ahmed 5

clothing significant under 259; fig. 5

cultural initiatives of 1921, 22

images of 14, 1819, 225; figs 14

and the military 301; fig. 6

as president of Guinea 1733

reputation of 1314

Sembène, Ousmane 66

Le dernier de L’Empire 175

Sheikh, Mohamed Aden 239, 23941

on Italian policy in Somalia 240

La Somalia non è un’insola dei Caraibi 240

Shermarke, Abdirashid Ali

murder of 202, 235, 2445

Sibanda, Eric 4, 78, 1612

‘Sagila Semnikati’ (The Owner’s Knobkerrie) 8, 1608

adaptations/editions/revisions of 156, 160, 162, 1645, 1667, 168

Sibisi, Vusi 168

Simelane, David 163

Sissako, Abderrahamane

Timbuktu 60

slaves

suicide of as agency 72

Smarty 69

‘Le Chapeau de chef’ 63, 66

Smockey 64

Sobhuza II (of Swaziland) 158, 169

Solis, Teresa 9

Somali language

official status of 237

Somali National Movement (SNM) 238

Somalia

civil war in 235, 238, 248

cultural and political resistance in 237

failed democracy in 202

Islam in 202

literacy campaign in 202

and literature of exile 2367, 2479

MOD faction in 235, 238

and Ogaden War 235

women’s resistance in 2389, 240

in works of Nuruddin Farah 201, 205

Somaliland, Republic of 238

Sorensen, Eli Park 192

Soudain, François

on President Eyadéma 1334

Southgate, Beverley

History meets Fiction 5

Soyinka, Wole

Kongi’s Harvest 200

A Play of Giants 3

Spronk, Rachel

on women and sexuality 2312

Swaziland

censorship in 160, 1689, 1701

ceremonial in 156, 1579, see Ncwala

democracy in 158

HIV/AIDS in 163

literature in 1556

and PUDEMO 1689

Tansi, Sony Labou 856, 89

La Vie et demi 175

Taylor, Charles 123

Teno, Jean-Marie

Afrique, je te plumerai 61

Chef 612, 64

Tonda, Joseph 104, 110

totemism

in En attendant le vote des bêtes sauvages 11921

Touré, Almamy Samory 14, 15, 16

clothing of 29

Sékou Touré and 18, 29, 32

trickster characters 904, 95

and divine world 923

Trump, Donald

as dictator 199

Tsabedze, Clara 155

Ture (trickster character) 90, 92

Umhlanga ceremony (Swaziland) 156

United States

and African ‘Leaders for Life’ 589

Valsero, General 63, 65, 68, 69, 7071, 73

‘Lettre au Président’ 6970

Motion de Sutient 70

Politikement Instable 70

van den Akker, Robin 91, 94

Vera, Yvonne

The Stone Virgins 178

Vermeulen, Timotheus 91, 94

Vincent, Kerry 78

Virella, Mirta 162

Waberi, Abdourahman Ali 80

Walsh, Richard 99

Wassoulou Empire 14, 15

Williams, Paul 109

Wilson, Madeleine 8

witch doctor

as healer 1012, 1089

sick 107

witchcraft

in Kenya 105, 106, 1089

women

bodies of, in fiction 1789

Wood’ou, Jo 66, 67, 69

significance of name of 689

Yaya, Alfa, of Labé 15

Zeleza, Tiyambe 4, 89

on Banda’s Malawi 217

Smouldering Charcoal 9, 215, 2212

female characters oppressed in 223, 2246, 2269

publication of 222

story of 2223