The Reception of American Literature in Cameroon

  •  Manyaka Djockoua    


In Cameroon, popular belief associates American literature with its country’s economic and political greatness. Yet, if millions of Cameroonians show a growing enthusiasm for a visit to the US, just a few are interested in learning its literature. Using theories on the reading and teaching of literature, statistical data based on a questionnaire, as well as mythological and comparative approaches to literature, this paper intends to point out the various causes of Cameroonian students’ lukewarm response to this literature and suggest some remedial strategies that may improve the reception of this discipline in Cameroon. The strategies recommended include the action of the Yaoundé-based American and Cameroonian officials, action which can foster the readers’ and scholars’ greater exposure to this discipline; the use of new technologies in the teaching of literature, which today, more than yesterday, has become a multimedia affair (Purves, 1997); and the comparative approach to the study of literary texts, as this approach connects American literature to the Cameroonian learners’ experience.

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