Sexual Violation of Men in Selected African Prose Fiction


African Humanities Program Postdoctoral Fellowships


General Studies


Existing studies on sexuality in Africa focus on women as the only violated or disadvantaged gender, keeping silent on the ways structures like patriarchy and religion that sexually violate women also violate men. This project, therefore, investigates the representation of sexual violation of men in African fiction. This is in an attempt to show that men are sexually victimised by the same structures as women and in given contexts which are capable of defining/redefining their Otherness. Festus Iyayi's "Heroes", Isidore Okpewho's "The Last Duty", Shimmer Chinodya's "Can We Talk", Ayi Kwei Armah's "Why Are We So Blest", Yambo Ouologuem’s "Bound to Violence", and Bessie Head’s "A Question of Power" are selected representative texts. These texts are read deconstructively, applying aspects of the psychoanalytical theories that account for sexuality, suffering and Otherness. It is hoped that this work shows how men, just as women, are sexually violated.