Get to know the ECRLF Fellows: Dr. Oluwole Coker

Growing up, Dr. Oluwole Coker had a deep passion for African literary and cultural studies. “I was fascinated by the depth of African orature and its seeming inexhaustiveness.” These were the experiences that motivated him to study Literature.

Dr. Oluwole Coker is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of English at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. His interests in postcolonial African fiction, orature and interdisciplinary studies have seen him extend his work into looking at under-explored African cultural forms that lie in the rich indigenous African societies. As a literary scholar, he strongly believes that there are important learnings in African Oral traditions which connect to contemporary realities. Dr Coker’s research is investigating the creative and cultural productions of the Yoruba of south-western Nigeria as critical exemplars. This is with the hope of bringing light to the value of theorising Africa by engaging African indigenous knowledge embedded in cultural forms.

Dr. Coker is part of a new breed of African literary scholars charting a fresh path where African cultural productions play important roles in the creation of indigenous epistemologies. This was one of the reasons he decided to join Future Africa as a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of English. He believes that Future Africa holds a unique position as a platform for cross-pollination of ideas in this regard. He intends to use this platform to engage and connect with other African literary scholars while exploring the interconnected relevance of African literature to contemporary realities. 

His advice to young people is that they should consistently strive for excellence and dare to be different. For the next cohort of Future Africa fellows, he believes innovation and research niche-carving should be the mantra.

View Dr. Oluwole Coker's first publication initiated and completed during his first stint at Future Africa.