The Epic of Son-Jara Presentation By: Matt Donaldson Jon Hill Nick Osnowitz Beth Walsh History ◊ Son-Jara was the first king/hero of the Mande people in what is now present day West Africa. ◊ He is an important historical figure even though there has never been written records of him. The story has been passed down orally for generations. ◊ The earliest reference was in the 15th century by an Arab historian. ◊ The Manding empire was founded around 1235 Culture ◊ Oral traditions • Griots ◊ Results in multiple versions of the story ◊ Three genres • Praise poetry • Songs • Call and response Brief Summary Theme? ◊ What is it? ◊ How did you come about your decision? ◊ Agree? ◊ Disagree? Our Thoughts on Theme ◊ Growing up and overcoming adversity. ◊ Good vs. Evil Theories ◊ Esau and Jacob? ◊ Is’mail and Isac? ◊ Cain and Able? ◊ Adam? ◊ Lion King? ◊ Homer • Odysseus and Son Jara Things to Think About ◊ The role of women in the story. ◊ Coincidence: 9 years of not walking compared to 9 years in the womb of his mother. ◊ The 9 Queens of Darkness. ◊ Sugulun: his sister. Bibliography ◊ Johnson, John W. The Epic of Son Jara. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2002. ◊ "English 203 Unit 10- Son Jara." Jan: Northern Arizona University Faculty/Staff Web Server. Web. 28 Aug. 2009. <http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~jgr6/203/unit10/index. htm>. ◊ "The Epic of Son-Jara." West Texas A&M University. Web. 28 Aug. 2009. <http://homedirs.wtamu.edu/~dwerden/ENGL23 71/Son-JaraSum&Chara.html>.