HomeLUMINAvol. 20 no. 2 (2009)

Technologizing Oral Texts: Archiving Yoruba Oral Literature through New Technological Media

Arinpe Adejumo

Discipline: Literature, Oral Literature



The study of oral literature started in the 19th century by European scholars who had a sustained interest and concern for the origin of human culture and the best way to teach and impart it to the coming generation. Yoruba oral literature is one of the major ways in which the Yoruba culture is transmitted and disseminated. However, civilization and urbanization processes among the Yoruba of southwestern Nigeria have culminated in a state of cultural diversity and cultural integration which has led to cultural hybridity; and this has affected the Yoruba society both negatively and positively. Some of the areas which are adversely affected are the Yoruba language, literature and culture. Research findings have revealed that the Yoruba language is endangered.ii Yoruba scholars are making frantic efforts to see that the language does not go into extinction. Such efforts include the collaborative seminar organized by Yoruba Studies Association and Oodua People's Congress on 21 February of 2007 and 2008 to mark the International Mother Language Day and a workshop sponsored by the Macmillan Publisher Plc, Nigeria on 14 May, 2008. The aim of the language and culture organizers was to create awareness on the development of nation. Yoruba culture and literature are also fast disappearing, whereas these aspects of Yoruba life are supposed to be the people's identity.