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7 - Satire and Society

from Part II - History, Fictions, and Factions

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  23 June 2022

Toyin Falola
Affiliation:
University of Texas, Austin
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Summary

The chapter begins with the concept of satire for the reader’s understanding of its broad and deep meaning and its significance. It proceeds to show the methodology of satire, which is to “highlight” and “ridicule” an act of folly to effect change in an individual, group, or society behind the act. It does this using figurative tools such as humor, hyperbole, irony, or sarcasm. In context, the chapter examines the use of satire and satirical expressions in works to mirror the African society. Importantly, the chapter notes that for satire to be birthed, there must be a set societal standard by which the subject’s action is measured against that which has been breached. While “morality is often the end goal of tales, parables, proverbs, etc., for satire, the concern goes above morality to include public interest.” The chapter finds satire in “songs of abuses,” which is very prominent among the Yoruba. These songs are often sung or performed when people are deemed to have fallen short of societal set standards. Or when criminals such as murderers, thieves, witches, and other extreme violators of social conduct are caught and especially exposed.

Type
Chapter
Information
Decolonizing African Knowledge
Autoethnography and African Epistemologies
, pp. 151 - 182
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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  • Satire and Society
  • Toyin Falola, University of Texas, Austin
  • Book: Decolonizing African Knowledge
  • Online publication: 23 June 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009049634.008
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  • Satire and Society
  • Toyin Falola, University of Texas, Austin
  • Book: Decolonizing African Knowledge
  • Online publication: 23 June 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009049634.008
Available formats
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To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Satire and Society
  • Toyin Falola, University of Texas, Austin
  • Book: Decolonizing African Knowledge
  • Online publication: 23 June 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009049634.008
Available formats
×