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From lived spaces to literary spaces: the figure of the child soldier in contemporary African literature

Simoes da Silva, T ORCID: 0000-0002-2453-8468 2017 , 'From lived spaces to literary spaces: the figure of the child soldier in contemporary African literature' , African Geographical Review , pp. 1-11 , doi: 10.1080/19376812.2017.1351881.

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Abstract

This article examines how fictional representations of civil conflict and its consequences enable contemporary African writers to capture the raft of ways in which war remains a troubling agent within the national body. This is especially relevant in the context of postcolonial societies living the traumatic aftermath of decolonization and liberation wars. Focusing on the figure of the ‘child soldier’ as an emblem of the experience of displacement as engendered by Civil war in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Half a Yellow Sun (2006) and Chris Abani’s Song for Night (2007), I argue that the figure of a child soldier qua displaced individual brings into relief a polemic and politically explosive commentary on the state of nationalism, statehood and citizenship in postcolonial, post-independence Africa.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Simoes da Silva, T
Keywords: Child soldiers, civil conflict, African literature, Adichie, Abani, refugees, violence and trauma
Journal or Publication Title: African Geographical Review
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1937-6812
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/19376812.2017.1351881
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 The African Specialty Group of the American Association of Geographers

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