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Nigeria has a long and rich tradition of literary expression. Though traditionally, many of the over 400 ethnic groups which make up modern day Nigeria, were not literate societies, powerful oral traditions filled the important roles of social narrative and historical record. Today literature continues is one of the fastest growing fileds of artistic endeavor, with hudreds of writers publishing both domestically and internationally and a wide range of literary events happening on a regular basis.

Oral Literature

Probably the oldest form of literature known to mankind, oral literature has a rich and abundant base in Nigeria, from the recounting of oral history and traditional folklore, to deep cultural traditions of poetry, proverbs and praise texts to the most contemporary realms of spoken word performance, word play and recitation. Nigeria is a fertile plain for oral literature.


Nigeria is home to a wide variety of Art and Cultural Institutions which present and educate about the arts and present and archive the works of Nigeria'a creative community.

  • The African Heritage Research Library (AHRL) was established March, 1988 at Ila Orangun, Osun State, Nigeria, to serve the educational needs of students, researchers, scholars, documentalists and archivists in Africa, and all over the world. Established also to serve the socio-cultural needs of the traders, local artisans, craftsmen and women etc. all of whom the Library registers free of charge. The Library is a DEPOSITORY and a CLEARING HOUSE for all publications on African in the Diaspora of the Americans, Europe, Asia, the Pacific and the Caribbean Islands. AHRL's collection of over 100,000 volumes cuts across all branches of knowledge as they relate to Africa. I.e. AFRICAN- Politics, Government, History, Language, Literature, Education, Arts, Music, Technology, Journalism, Sports, Geography, Tourism, Law, Health Science, Serials/Journals, References, Religion, Culture and Audio Visuals… The Library also maintains special collection on Eminent Africans, Marcus Garvey,African Woman, African Child, Pacific Studies, Caribbean Studies, Text Books,African-American Studies,and a premier Children's Collection.

The African Heritage Research Library has now become a place of teaching and research, a place of culture, of information and intellectual exchange. The Library is a member of an international body:The UNESCO Network of Associated Libraries (UNAL).