Professor Aduke Adebayo of the Department of Modern European Languages of the University of Ibadan (UI) has identified poverty as a major obstacle to the study of literature in Nigeria. In an inaugural lecture, titled,
â€œThe Nature and Functions of Literature: The Comparatistâ€™s Perspective,â€ deliveredÂ at the university, she listed the advantages of literature but lamented that the present generation was not in a position to appreciate them.
Her words: â€œWe are witnessing in Nigeria a gradual decline of literature not because young Nigerians are not interested in or capable of studying it but because of poverty. Many Nigerian parents force their children to drop literature for subjects that only involve note taking.
“The consequence is that the nation loses a unique opportunity to orientate its younger generation ethically and aesthetically through the power of literature.â€
According to the first African female dean of the universityâ€™s Faculty of Arts, literature also serves sublime purposes.