Tarker Golozo: Portrait of A Tiv Oral Singer
Nile Journal of English Studies
Oral literature has been the original medium of communication in traditional societies. Unfortunately however, in most instances when contributions of individual members of a society are being considered, emphasis is usually placed on the contributions of the educated elites in such a society with rare attention given to the efforts of the oral artists who, through their songs preach unity and mobilize the populace to embrace many a government programmes/projects. In Nigeria for instance,
... s the role of literary artists like Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Niyi Osundare, Buchi Emecheta, just to mention a few, are well known and appreciated both within Nigeria and beyond, hardly are the roles and contributions of the countless oral artists that are constantly playing important roles in the development of various sectors of the Nigerian state highlighted and celebrated. This paper is therefore a deliberate effort to critically project the life and times of Tarker Golozo, one of the most outstanding oral composers/singers that ever lived in Tivland of Benue State in the North Central geo-political zone of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Golozo's comments on local, national and sometimes international issues are worth documenting and analyzing. The aim is to project and therefore state that when considering contributions of members of a society to its development, a holistic approach should be adopted so as not to alienate any significant segment of such a society. The paper concludes that more scholarly research activities should be carried out by oral literary scholars across the globe to highlight, document and preserve such contributions as it is being done for the written artists, across cultures.