Oladele Olusanya was in the class forward of yours at Authorities Faculty, Ibadan, and in Medical College. Clearly endowed with slack capability, he would sit at school sketching pictures of the lecturer at the same time as he took in the lecture, and but he would breeze effortlessly via the prescribed examinations.
Dele is at the moment a doctor working towards in Dallas Texas. He attracts and paints and holds the occasional exhibition.
He’s unveiling his opus main, an formidable work that’s nothing lower than an try to inform the story of his individuals, the Yoruba, utilizing a style of literature which may be described as faction. It’s a tour de drive.
Dele hails from a household with a convention of storytelling. From a legendary Previous Lady all the way down to his personal organic mom, the story of the Yoruba is given lively life via the private drama of the Olusanyas and Odusanyas who’ve ended up, over centuries of migration, as residents of Ijebuland and Remo.
All of it begins wih the departure of Lamurudu from Nubia in North Africa, and proceeds to the arrival of his son Oduduwa in the land that may be often known as Ile Ife.
Dele is doing what his mom and all his storytelling forebears did earlier than him however placing the story on paper as an alternative of oral custom and enlarging the ambit.
The product is three volumes of work, totaling some one thousand pages, with the broad title ITAN LEGENDS OF THE GOLDEN AGE.
Gods and Heroes is the first of these three volumes.
Wale Babalakin, Chairman of the occasion, is mildly apologetic that he, a junior boy from the 1971 set of GCI, is being requested to preside over a ebook launch the place the writer is a senior boy from the 1965 set, and the place many in the viewers are senior boys. Past the jokes, he goes on to talk eloquently, as is his wont. He pronounces he’s buying of copies the ebook for each college in Nigeria.
Trawling via the ebook takes the reader via the epic journey of Oduduwa. He has inherited the mantle of management over a individuals who name themselves Our Folks, or Inago, and who would solely be often known as Yoruba a lot later. His arrival in Ile Ife. The intermingling with the aboriginal Igbo. The riot of the aborigines.
Oduduwas sons spreading out to discovered the seven unique kingdoms. The heroic sacrifice of Moremi. Oranmiyan and the founding of Oyo Empire. Eweka, Oranminyans son and the creation the new royal lineage in the Benin empire. The ascendancy of nice Oyo Empire. The titanic struggles of nice males of valour, and the girls who impressed and usually managed them. The overweening cultural emphasis on omoluabi the crucial to do the proper factor for the particular person and the collective.
In the raconteurs recollections, one of his ancestors, a person named Osogbesan, is shipped by the Alafin and his cupboard – the Oyo Mesi, on a mission to Afonja the estranged Aare Ona Kankanfo in Ilorin, to reconcile him with the Oyo Empire and rescue him from the impending treachery by his erstwhile buddy Alimi and his fighters the al majiri, who they’ve found to have a hidden agenda via some intercepted communication.
Oyo is sacked, and its individuals are dispersed to the new centres of Yoruba energy to Ibadan, to Ijaiye. The advance of the rampaging jihadists is halted.
The founding of In the past dOyo. The debate over whether or not Prince Atiba ought to turn into Alafin on this new, a lot lesser homeland of the Yoruba.
The reader meets with Hugh Clapperton and the Lander brothers, as the exterior world insidiously intrudes upon the Yoruba world. There may be the story of how the Scotsman Mungo Park goes to his finish gun in hand, confronting hostile locals at a waterfall.
Deles work introduces Yoruba life and mythology to the world, intermingled. Gods turn into males, and males turn into gods. There’s a central kernel of recorded reality.
In 1796, when Alafin Aole is directed to fall asleep at the behest of his Oyo Mesi and Afonja, his rebellious Aare Ona Kankanfo, he angrily swallows the poison, however together with his final bit of energy, he stands tall, reaches into his pouch and fires arrows to the 4 winds, uttering what has turn into recognized via the ages as Aoles Curse:
Could this curse of I, Aole, Alafin
Fall on the home of Oyo
The rulers of Yorubaland shall be divided
The outdated unity of the Yorubas
Can be misplaced
The historic home and legacy of Oduduwa
Unloved and unattended
Can be overthrown by a international individuals
Some authorities would aver that Aoles curse haunts his individuals to this present day.
In the ebook, Afonja, the Aare Ona Kankanfo himself is finally found by Osogbesan, the emissary despatched by the new Alafin and Oyo Mesi to warn him. He’s freshly impaled on the spear of Abdulsalam the son of his treacherous buddy Alimi. The spear was pushed in so exhausting that it has gone proper via his physique and into the physique of one of the al majiri who was holding him from behind, becoming a member of them collectively in dying. Abdulsalam would turn into the first Emir of Ilorin, a land newly excised from Yorubaland. To some, Afonjas destiny is held to be simply deserts for treachery to the Yoruba.
Gods and Heroes, in addition to the complete trilogy of ITAN LEGENDS OF THE GOLDEN AGE, is beneficial studying as partaking literature, as a treasure trove of Yoruba historical past and as useful resource materials for anybody all in favour of getting an perception into the nuanced and difficult Psychology of the Yoruba.
Gods and Heroes is printed by Maven Publishing, Ibadan.
It’s accessible in bookshops and on-line from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Okada Books.