The Department of English of the University of Lagos is collaborating with the Committee For Relevant Art (CORA) to present a reading of Ifeoma Okoye’s The Fourth World.
To be held at the Faculty of Arts Boardroom at 11am on Wednesday, February 28, it is the second of the UNILAG readings jointly organised and promoted with CORA.
The Fourth World is an engaging, keenly observed, work of prose which explores the disempowering institution of poverty. It was on the longlist of the 2016 edition of the Nigeria Prize for Literature (NPL), sponsored by the NLNG Ltd.
Mrs. Okoye, wife of the late philosopher and nationalist Mokwugo Okoye, is comfortable with fighting with words. Her last novel, the ANA award winning Men Without Ears, published in 1984, railed against the itchy fingered politicians of the Second Republic, and went to such length as to insinuate a military coup against the civilian dispensation.
In The Fourth World, Mrs. Okoye goes to places where the country’s middle class would rather leave behind. A staunch member of the left leaning segment of the transition between the Soyinka-Achebe and the Osofisan-Omotoso generations of Nigerian writers, she sees fictional prose as platform to right wrongs. The Fourth World may be at times a stomach-churning insight into the daily grind of society’s losers, but it’s a very important work.