1166 University Avenue West
Through African folklore and literature we can understand the core of our humanity. With that better understanding, we can choose to throw off Eurocentric ways of thought and behavior, and attempt to move towards a more authentic expression of ourselves. Mwalimu (Professor) Mbele will expose us to folktales and stories that embody the rich heritage of African thought, values, and mores that uphold the social, economic and political fabric of African peoples. These lessons from our African past can help us
intentionally alter how we think and behave as we create family and community today.
Dr. Joseph Mbele is an Associate Professor of English at St. Olaf College. He previously taught at the University of Dar es Salaam, in Tanzania. He specializes in folklore–especially tales of tricksters, outlaws, epic heroes–and its connection with literature. He has taught courses such as Swahili Literature, Theory of Literature, African Literature, Sociology of Literature,
Post-colonial Literature, and African American Literature. He is also the author of Matengo Folktales and Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences.