By Toyin Omoyeni Falola
"A greatest coming-of-age tale so choked with vibrant colour and emotion, the phrases appear to dance off the web page. yet this isn't simply Falola's memoir; it truly is an account of a brand new state entering being and the tensions and negotiations that at all times take place among urban and nation, culture and modernity, women and men, wealthy and terrible. a very attractive book."-Robin D. G. Kelley "More than a private memoir, this ebook is a wealthy minihistory of up to date Nigeria recorded in scrumptious aspect by means of a perceptive eyewitness who grew up on the crossroads of many cultures."-Bernth LindforsA Mouth Sweeter Than Salt gathers the tales and reflections of the early years of Toyin Falola, the grand historian of Africa and one of many maximum sons of Ibadan, the remarkable Yoruba city-state in Nigeria.Redefining the autobiographical style altogether, Falola miraculously weaves jointly own, old, and communal tales, in addition to political and cultural advancements within the interval instantly previous and following Nigeria's independence, to provide us a special and enduring photo of the Yoruba within the mid-twentieth century. this can be actually a literary memoir, informed in language wealthy with proverbs, poetry, music, and humor.Falola's memoir is way greater than the tale of 1 man's formative years reviews; quite, he provides us with the riches of a whole tradition and community-its historical past, traditions, pleasures, mysteries, loved ones preparations, kinds of strength, struggles, and ameliorations.
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Additional info for A Mouth Sweeter Than Salt: An African Memoir
An Ibadan warrior would find it undignified to cover a mistake with a lie. The war boy said that he had taken the antelope. He thanked the hunter for killing it, but could not imagine why a cat who has successfully chased a dog should now see himself as a tiger. He chastised the hunter for wasting the bullet on an antelope when he could have used it to kill a man of his age, reducing the number of Ibadan’s enemies and carrying the fresh skull of the dead man to the city for all to see. If the hunter was afraid of a fellow man, the war boy did not know why he killed the antelope as if he were afraid of the animal.
As they ripen, they rot. It was on the day that my father was born that my city, too, was reborn. It was reborn into tradition, losing its modernity. Rather than becoming postmodern, it regressed into the neotraditional. The wars came to an end. It was clear that my father would not become a soldier, except in the colonial army or police. Only those without status, courage, and identity chose the colonial army and police created by the British to impose their power and majesty. It was much later, after the country had become independent, that military officers realized that they could use their guns to stage coups and stay in power.
He was born on the day that his father threw away the documents of his chairman. You can use the event to determine his real age. I have given you the clues. Perhaps one day I will seek help to learn the date on which I threw away the box, and I expect sympathy from you. If my son protests, asking for his birth certificate, criticizing me for my carelessness for not keeping the one his mother obtained on the day of his birth, I will stay calm, musing to myself that when a lion becomes old he is a toy for little flies.