ISBN 9789780390884
Pages 108
Dimensions 216 x 140 mm
Published 2004
Publisher Kraft Books, Nigeria
Format Paperback

Chants of a Minstrel

by Ezenwa Ohaeto

The Chants of Minstrel won the ANA/NDDC Poetry Prize for 2004

'My ancestors were minstrels. Their honeyed tongue could weave lyrics out of almost all forms of human interactions and activities. This tradition is encapsulated by the performance of the famous ode poetry prevalent among their descendants, which is presented under numerous kinds of stimuli. Thus the emotional impulses expressed here, the rhetorical modes adopted here and the verbalised rhythmic sequences illustrated here are derived from the minstrel tradition associated with ode poetry performance... The use of alternative poetic models is equally a result of a sophisticated understanding of the forms of performance discernible in other is the amalgamation of imaginative narratives, folklore and contemporary concerns... There is no doubt that this cultural model of the minstrel generates abundant inspiration and provides a variety of artistic modes that enable the mind of the poet to distil new chants. I drank from the spring of tradition. My ancestors were minstrels and I have only continued in the same tradition.'

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About the Author

Ezenwa Ohaeto

Ezenwa-Ohaeto is a poet, short-story writer, biographer and literary scholar. Some of his most recent works are Winging Words. Interviews with Nigerian Writers and Critics, The Chants of a Minstrel, which won the ANA/NDDC POETRY Prize for 2004 and The Voice of the Night Masquerade, all published by Kraft Books, Nigeria, and distributed by ABC. He is the author of an authorised biography of Chinua Achebe, which was given the Choice Outstanding Book Award in 1998. He has received several other prestigious awards, including the Association of Nigerian Authors Poetry Prize - for The Voice of the Night Masquerade, a BBC poetry prize, the Orphic Lute Prize and the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Prize.

His books have been translated into Russian, French and Italian. His poetry has been performed in English and Igbo throughout the world. Ezenwa- Ohaeto has held various posts at the universities of Bayreuth, Mainz and the Humboldt University, Berlin, in Germany; and at the universities of Harvard, and Texas at Austin in the United States. He is presently Professor of English at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria.

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