Nigerian playwright, winner of Nobel Prize for literature in 1986.
Wole Soyinka was born Akinwande Oluwole Soyinka in 1934. He studied at the University College
of Ibadan, and then later at Leeds University in England. At Leeds, he was taught by
renowned Shakespeare scholar G. Wilson Knight. He returned to Nigeria in 1960, commissioned
to write a play celebrating its independence. This play was titled A Dance of the
Forests and mixed Western aesthetics and African folk tradition, including Yoruba pagan beliefs, a blend to be
repeated in many of his later plays. The theme of post-colonial Nigeria struggling to reconcile its new-found independance with its colonial past is present in many of his works. His political views landed him in solitary confinement for two years,
and he was only released after a strong international campaign. He has since been exiled
from Nigeria, due to his views.
- 1958 The Swamp Dwellers, drama
- 1959 The Lion and the Jewel, drama
- 1960 The Trials of Brother Jero, drama
- 1965 The Interpreters, fiction
- ----Before the Blackout, drama
- ----Kongi's Harvest, drama
- ----The Detainee, (BBC Radio Play)
- 1967, "The Writer in a Modern African State"
- ----Idanre and Other Poems
- 1969 Poems from Prison
- ----The Road, drama
- 1970Madmen and Specialists,
- 1972 The Man Died, (notes from prison)
- ----A Shuttle in the Crypt
- Ogun Abibiman, poems
- 1976 Death and the King's Horseman
- 1979 Season of Anomy, fiction
- 1981 Aké: The Years of Childhood, autobiography
- ---- "The Critic and Society: Barthes, Leftocracy, and Other Mythologies"
- ---- Opera Wonyosi, an adaptation of Brecht's Three Penny Opera
- 1982 "Cross Currents: The 'New African' after Cultural Encounters"
- 1983 "Shakespeare and the Living Dramatist"
- 1985 "Climates of Art"
- 1986 "The External Encounter: Ambivalence in African Arts and Literature"
- 1987 Six Plays
- 1989 Isara: A Voyage around Essay, autobiography
- Mandela's Earth and Other Poems
- 1992 From Zia With Love
- 1995 The Beatification of Area Boy
- 1996 The Open Sore of a Continent: A Personal Narrative of the Nigerian Crisis
Brians, Paul."Wole Soyinka Study Guide", Washington State University
"Wole Soyinka's Works". National University of Singapore.