Special Issue on Illnesses, Diseases and Medicalisation in African Literature

Submission Deadline: May 30, 2021

Please click the link to know more about Manuscript Preparation: http://www.literarts.org/submission

This special issue currently is open for paper submission and guest editor application.

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Special Issue Flyer (PDF)
  • Lead Guest Editor
    • Dr Stephen Kekeghe
      Department of English, Faculty of Humanities, Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo, Nigeria
  • Guest Editor
    Guest Editors play a significant role in a special issue. They maintain the quality of published research and enhance the special issue’s impact. If you would like to be a Guest Editor or recommend a colleague as a Guest Editor of this special issue, please Click here to complete the Guest Editor application.
    • Dr Sola Owonibi
      Department of English, Adekunle Ajasin University, Ondo, Nigeria
    • Professor Emmanuel Babatunde Omobowale
      Department of English, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
    • Dr Femi Eromosele
      Centre for the Advancement of Scholarship, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
  • Introduction

    This issue will examine the representation of illnesses, diseases and disabilities in African literature (both in the oral and written dimensions). The focus of the study is on literary-diagnoses of pathological conditions, physical and mental. The aim of this study is to highlight how illnesses, physical and psychological conditions, manifest in people, the experiences of the sufferers and their relationship with physicians and care-givers. The essence of this is to humanise modern medical practice in Africa, through the instrumentality of literary imagination.
    The study, which is anchored on the analysis of literary texts, argues that the imagination and exploration of human health conditions is a reflection of the social commitment of the writer, whose vision is to reorder society. As a way of conveying social reality, writers explore biological, socioeconomic and cultural dimensions of human health and medical practice. Literature and medicine, as an interdisciplinary study, shows the social function of literature which lies at the intersection of humanities, medicine and social sciences. Since illness and medical experiences are daily encountered in our society, writers’ exploration of such health conditions attests, significantly, to their consciousness of societal depravities and commitment for social and human improvement. For instance, in D. S. Sheriff’s essay, “Literature and Medical Ethics” (1988), he highlights the significance of literature in conveying human health experiences: “Literature is life. Literary classics present and confront us with the problems of daily human experience including medical ones” (688). Literature, given the humanism that informed its content, is characteristically realistic. This verisimilitude is not a mere reflection of social characters— it demonstrates significant suggestions for social improvement.
    Therefore, since illnesses and diseases originate from the social space, they are socially constructed. Illness, as we have experienced in the society, usually reshape the identity of the patient or sufferer. A valid example is deafness, which can be a cultural identity. Social reality, which differs significantly from biological or individual cognitive reality, is evident in the creation and construction of social experiences through interaction with societal encounters. The creation of characters that suffer from pathologies— physical or mental— is a creative perspective that is anchored on social behaviours. The writer, in that sense, invented his ailing characters and the incident surrounding their health conditions from the society. The writer’s universe is constructed from the universe inhabited by people of life and blood.
    Aims and Scope:
    1. Representation of physical illnesses, diseases and recuperation in written and oral literature in Africa
    2. Exploration of mental conditions and healing in African literature
    3. Depictions of Medical ethics in African literature
    4. African literature and psychotherapy
    5. African literature and rehabilitation
    6. African literature and physician-patient relationship

  • Guidelines for Submission

    Manuscripts can be submitted until the expiry of the deadline. Submissions must be previously unpublished and may not be under consideration elsewhere.

    Papers should be formatted according to the guidelines for authors (see: http://www.literarts.org/submission). By submitting your manuscripts to the special issue, you are acknowledging that you accept the rules established for publication of manuscripts, including agreement to pay the Article Processing Charges for the manuscripts. Manuscripts should be submitted electronically through the online manuscript submission system at http://www.sciencepublishinggroup.com/login. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal and will be listed together on the special issue website.

  • Published Papers

    The special issue currently is open for paper submission. Potential authors are humbly requested to submit an electronic copy of their complete manuscript by clicking here.