"Fagunwa's language has a rolling energy that serves it well."Rudi Dornemann, Rain Taxi
"Readers can only be grateful that Soyinka used his prison time to bring this important Yoruba novel into English."Geoff Wisner, The Quarterly Conversation
About the Author
About D.O. Fagunwa
In 1938, entering a literary contest of the Nigerian education ministry, Daniel O. Fagunwa wrote Forest of a Thousand Daemons, one of the first novels to be written in any African language. Fagunwa was the first Nigerian writer to employ folk philosophy in telling his stories and his influence on Nigerian literature is profound, most notable in the works of Amos Tutuola.
Fagunwa studied at St. Luke's School and St. Andrew's College in Nigeria, before becoming a teacher himself. In 1959, he was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire.
He died in 1963 and remains the most widely-read Yorùbá-language author.
About Translator Wole Soyinka
Akinwande Oluwole "Wole" Soyinka is a Nigerian writer, notable especially as a playwright and poet; he was awarded the 1986 Nobel Prize in Literature, the first person in Africa and the diaspora to be so honored.
Soyinka has remained active in Nigeria's political history and its struggle for independence from Great Britain. In 1967 during the Nigerian Civil War, he was arrested by the federal government of General Yakubu Gowon and put in solitary confinement for two years. It is there that he translated Forest of a Thousand Daemons.
Soyinka has taught at Cornell, Oxford, Harvard, Yale, and Emory University, where in 1996 he was appointed Robert W. Woodruff Professor of the Arts. With civilian rule restored to Nigeria in 1999, Soyinka returned to his nation.
About Illustrator Bruce Onobrakpeya
A world-renowned artist, Bruce Onobrakpeya is best known for his printmaking, painting and sculptures. He has exhibited at the Tate Modern in London, the National Museum of African Art of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. and the Malmö Konsthall in Malmö, Sweden. In 1990 he participated in the 44th Venice Biennale where he received an honorable mention. He has received awards from the University of Ibadan, the Solidra Circle award, the Living Human Treasure Award given by UNESCO, and is the second winner of the prestigious Nigerian Creativity Award by the Federal Government of Nigeria. Its first winner was Chinua Achebe. Onobrakpeya is a founding member of the Society of Nigerian Artists.