EJLLS Publication

Title: Language, Literature and Children in Emerging African Society: A Focus on the Nigerian Igbo Child Language
Author(s): Christopher Amaechi UGWU
Abstract: We are living in a changing world which needs also changing attitude towards issues that confront us as the world changes. We often hear that the youths (children) are the leaders of tomorrow. How do we intend to set a pace for the growing child who would become the leader tomorrow? What approaches should we adopt in order to ensure a smooth take-off and sail of these leaders of tomorrow in the turbulent and tumultuous world that is emerging? Language and literature can be a sure bet. The use of children’s literature can be a turn-around in inculcating in the growing child the norms and ethics of the Igbo race. This can be done both at homes and in schools as we talk about emerging Africa in this era. The growing Nigerian-Igbo child can be acquainted with the cultures, norms, ethics, values and morals of the race using fictional narratives and dramatic works of literature as exemplified by Isaac Emeka Ufondu’s The Fruit of Honesty and Inno Uzoma Nwadike’s Omume Onye na-edu Ya. This paper sets out to discuss how these two works of literature (one in the English language and the other in Igbo language) can be of immense help in addressing the issues bearing in mind the functions of literature as an art in the life of the growing child.
Keywords: Language, Literature, Igbo, children’s literature