The state of Hausa children’s folktales and play-songs in Gombe, Nigeria




children’s literature, folktales, play-songs, globalisation, cultauriture


In this paper I investigate the state of Hausa children’s folktales and play-songs in Gombe, Nigeria to ascertain whether they (folktales and play-songs of children) are still alive and active in this culturally important town in northern Nigeria. My specific objectives are to examine how much parents and their children know of Hausa children’s folktales and play-songs and argue that folktales and play-songs are to some extent infused with modern technologies because of globalisation and that mass media has taken over the dissemination of such cultures. To achieve this aim, I employ questionnaires as the instrument of data collection. The subjects for the research are 150 parents and their school-going and out-of-school children aged 20-above and 0–10 respectively. Arguing that globalisation impacts the oral transmission of cultural knowledge more than ever, I adopt technauriture and cultauriture as the theoretical models. Analysis of the data reveals a more than 90% awareness of folktales and play-songs from all respondents. However, some school-going children prefer to watch such oral traditions via satellite rather than listening to a narration as it enhances their language development and nurtures and preserves culture using the paradigm of technology with audio-visual media. The out-of-school children, on the other hand, listen to the narration but are not captivated by it because it only uses the oral means of dissemination. They prefer to watch television and play video games as this educates and entertains using technology, orality, and visuals.


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Author Biography

Bilkisu Abubakar Arabi, Gombe State University, Gombe, Nigeria

Bilkisu Abubakar Arabi is lecturer in the Department of English, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Gombe State University, Gombe, Nigeria.


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How to Cite

Abubakar Arabi, B. (2023). The state of Hausa children’s folktales and play-songs in Gombe, Nigeria. Tydskrif Vir Letterkunde, 60(3), 90–105.



Research articles