Understanding People’s Occupations in their Proverbs: The Case of Fulɓe Ethnic Group


    Literature and culture are two inseparable entities. The former exploits the latter and represents it in a literary form. This is so because literature is a product of people’s experiences either individually as in the case of written texts or collectively as in the case of orature of which proverb is a part. This paper aims at using Fulɓe proverbs to study the way they encapsulate and portray herding which is the major occupation of the Fulɓe. The proverbs were collected over a long period from various literature as well as from individuals by the researcher. The analysis which is based on the researcher’s cultural experiences as a native of Fulfulde (the language of the Fulɓe) as well as the use of literary criticism strategy reveals that herding is encapsulated in the proverbs as an important occupation of the Fulɓe. This is because both the cattle rearers and the cattle as well as the various activities and ‘paraphernalia’ involved in the cattle rearing are also encapsulated in the proverbs. This has further justified that literature can be used to study a societal culture.

    Keywords: Occupation, Proverb, Fulɓe Ethnic Group

    DOI:  www.doi.org/10.36349/tjllc.2023.v02i02.009

    author/Adamu Shede, PhD

    journal/Tasambo JLLC | 15 June 2023 |  P. 77-84