African Creation Stories
It is necessary to consider the cosmogony of a people if one is to attempt to understand them. How the people view the world greatly depends on where they believe they came from. In many ways, modern Africa and Africans are products of their beliefs about their origin. Creation stories explain manís connection to earth and divinity. By explaining the source of nature, and humanís role in nature, man can establish the foundation for human relations, agriculture, science, law, customs, art and society.
The author of The Creation of the Universe, made the enlightened observation that:
"There is a divine sanction to these myths; they do not appear in isolation. They are therefore intertwined with the human response to nature and the metaphysical; in fact, the creation myths are the fundamental rituals of African being. Through examination of several different African creation tales, themes of certain values, mores, and norms are able to be seen. However, each of these tales is unique, and this uniqueness allows us to see distinctions in the ideas and values of the individual cultures".
The following are links to various creation tales originating in Africa:
The following links are papers prepared by members of our class, which use the above stories to examine the similarities and differences in the beliefs of various African peoples:
Themes In African Creation Stories by Nicholas Fortuna