Literature Review: Academic writing on African narratives

In 2018 the fictional country Wakanda from the film Black Panther was the fourth most mentioned African country on Twitter.

The fact that Africa’s 4th most talked-about country doesn’t exist tells us two things: pop culture is a powerful tool for narrative work and we need to do more to make Africa’s 51 remaining real countries more compelling.

We discovered this fact during a literature review to understand what insights already exist about narrative in Africa in the media. 

We analysed 56 documents of literature published after 2000 including research reports, books, chapters, and academic journal articles.

Although by no means comprehensive, the literature review does provide a snapshot into the narrative space.

So, what did we find? A few surprising facts like the one about Wakanda, but admittedly nothing we didn’t already suspect.