Arican Literature and Witchcraft

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The narrow path as a literary representation of witchcraft, the African perspective Another African writer on witchcraft is Francis Selormey in his work entitled The Narrow Path. This book tells the story of the upbringing of a young boy in a strict mission household and his conflict with his father. It also deals effectively with the notion of witchcraft from the Ghanaian persperctive. In this book, the existence of witchcraft is portrayed through the beliefs and practices of the people.These beliefs and practices are reinforced by fetish priests who are thought of as messengers of the gods. In the early parts of the story, when Edzi and Nani’s first child, Kofi, falls sick, it is attributed to the works of a wizard or witch tryin to suck the blood of the little boy. This belief is strengthened by the fetish priest who knows very well that the truth of the matter is far from what he would have the troubled mother and grandmother believe. He goes on to give the mother “a few simple rules to follow in other to preserve the life of her child.” Among these, he asks her to place a bowl of palm oil before each window so that “all witches and wizards travelling about at night, who might wish to take the life of the child, will drink the oil and besatisfied and so will not enter the room to drink the child’s blood. Even though we know this is not really the case, the grandmother, Dekpor, pays a huge sum of money to the priest because the society actually believes in the existence and works of witches and wizards. Again, when the child’s sickness reoccurs, we find his mother going through the town, beating a tin and shouting in a loud voice “you witches and wizards of this place, leave my child. Give him back his life. Cease drinking his blood and I will give you palm oil to drink.” Eight chapters through the story, Kofi falls sick again, and even though there was a
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