Narrative Voice and Focalization in the Narration of Generational Conflicts in Selected Kiswahili Novels


Dr. Magdaline Wafula

Research Area:


The study examines the representation of generational conflicts in four Swahili novels from Kenya and Tanzania – specifically Kufa Kuzikana (Walibora, 2003), Tumaini (Momanyi, 2006), Kipimo cha Mizani (Burhani, 2004) and Msimu wa Vipepeo (Wamitila, 2006). Generational conflicts in this study refer to the collision of interests or ideals between people of different age groups concerning various social-cultural, political and economic issues.

Its main interest is to analyze how different writers deploy narrative voice as a narrative technique in the portrayal of generational conflicts. It will specifically address questions bordering on how narrative voice has been utilized in the representation of generational conflicts in selected Swahili novels, the particular conflicts depicted in the novels, how these conflicts reflect the socio-cultural and historical backgrounds of the authors and how the narrative techniques employed influence the meaning of the conflicts to the audience.

The study is significant in that it reveals the fact that literature and the Swahili novel in particular is one of the key spaces through which social changes in the society are being communicated to the public. The selection of novels written by both male and female authors can give insights into how the aspect of gender is capable of influencing the depiction of generational conflicts in literary works and in the Swahili novel in particular.