Folklore in Yorùbá Novels: A Potential Tool for Culture Documentation and Preservation
Culture documentation and preservation have become a noticed aspect of cultural sustainability within the ambit of development agenda. Folklore in literary arts plays a unique and undisputable role within cultural sustainability by preserving society’s heritage. In other words, folklore employed in literature, literary arts to be precise, serves as a means of culture documentation and preservation. One common feature of Yorùbá novels is the significant presence of folklore materials. This study interrogates the role of novelists in documenting and preserving Yorùbá culture by employing Functional theory to critically analyse Ìṣọ̀lá’s Ogún Ọmọdé and Òní’s Ojú Rí. The intent is to validate the viability of the novel as a channel for keeping Yorùbá culture alive through the incorporation of folklore materials. The paper argues that more explicit coverage of culture documentation and preservation required not only improves the contributions of writers as agents of culture documentation and preservation, but also presents an increased understanding and appreciation of the value of the writers for their continued survival, individually and collectively. It concludes that employment of folklore in literary arts is a viable way of culture safeguarding which every writer should imbibe.