African Stories Usually About Dictatorship, Diseases and Wars Says Lupita Nyong’o

The written language only came to Africa in the late 16th century. Only then missionaries and explorers begin to put an alphabet to the spoken African languages.

Before that, for thousands of years, African stories, fables and myths was carried forward verbally from generation to generation, and sadly quite often forgotten.

Most traditional African folk tales, myths and fables have a moral point to them, or is use to educate, or entertain, or to explain animal behaviour, educate on traditions or correct behaviour. African mythology stories generally all have an specific moral theme to them.

Lupita Nyong’o, Kenyan-Mexican actress and Oscar winner, says African stories are often told from the perspective of foreigners.

The Hollywood actress noted that the continent’s stories centre chiefly on dictatorship, wars, and diseases.


In an interview with BBC, Nyong’o explained that ‘Queen of Katwe’, her recently released movie, portrays the African continent in a much more honest light.

She said: “This is a film that stands out because it is all too often that African stories are told from the vantage point of a foreigner or from the view of the animals and when it is African stories, it is often much larger stories, it is of scope of dictators, diseases or war”.

Speaking about the plot of Queen of Katwe, the actress said: “Here we have an intimate story about ordinary people doing the extraordinary thing and that’s meaningful”.

“It is about having more stories that offer us different perspectives and in so doing, we get better understanding of the world we live in”, she added.


Written by Bello Olusayo

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