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UI to host Christopher Okigbo conference


Event to mark 50 years of his death


By Nsikan Ikpe


The University of Ibadan, UI will be the venue for an international conference to mark 50 years of the passage of one of Africa’s preeminent poets, Christopher Okigbo.

In a notice from the Christopher Okigbo Foundation, it advertises that the event, The Christopher Okigbo Conference; would hold at the University from September 20 through September 21, 2017

It is therefore calling for abstracts from scholars and researchers on the theme of the conference: “Legacy of Christopher Okigbo: 50 Years On.”

According to the statement: ‘The conference is to celebrate the golden anniversary of the passage of Christopher Ifekandu Okigbo (16 August 1932– September 1967) the Nigerian poet, teacher, and librarian, who died fighting for the independence of Biafra. He is today widely acknowledged as an outstanding postcolonial English-language African poet and one of the major modernist writers of the 20th century. As part of the activities to commemorate his passage, a two- day Conference is being planned for September 20 2017 at his alma mater, the University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

In so doing, the Conference will also be celebrating the works of one of Africa’s most outstanding Poets as well as the achievements, friendships, partnerships and challenges of African Literature this past 50 years. The conference will be a platform for writers, scholars, literary critics and other interested parties to engage, rethink and propose possible new directions for African Poetry and Literature.’

Among others, intending paper presenters are being requested to write on ‘Prophesy and Poesy in the works of Okigbo, Okigbo and the Poetics of Obscurity, Journey of self-rediscovery in the poems of Christopher Okigbo, Traditionalism versus Modernity in the poems of Okigbo, War, Communality and the Okigbo Legacy, Alienation as a technique in Okigbo’s Poetry, The Okigbo Spirit in the Establishment of Modern African Poetry, Culture, Nationalism and the African Writer, Literary Influences, Impacts and Imitations across Generations and Okigbo in the Style and Function of Nigerian Literature.

The stated deadline for the submission of abstracts is 30th April 2017 and all abstracts should be submitted electronically to: Charles Akinsete, Department of English, Univeristy of Ibadan at and

Author of the seminal collections, Heavensgate and Path of Thunder, Okigbo, who was a university librarian, poet and publisher, died while fighting on the Biafran side during the Nigeria Civil War.


Christopher Okigbo

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