Satires have always been an integral aspect of Yoruba life and thoughts. Yoruba visual culture often manifests through verbal arts (orature, poetry, songs), performing arts (festivals, dance, masking and masquerades) and the visual arts (wood carving, pottery, textiles). Satires can be utilized through conscious dissemination of visual codes and innuendos in a deliberate and intelligent manner with the intent to examine issues affecting society. Against this background, Yomi Ola provides an insight into Yoruba concept and use of satire, tracing its appearance to wood sculptures by Olowe of Ise (ca. 1873–ca. 1938). He asserts that the modern manifestations of satire and social criticism in contemporary Yoruba art are vividly presented in editorial cartooning which was started by Akinola Lasekan (1916–1974) in pre-independence Nigeria.

Satires of Power is situated within the larger framework of Yoruba satirical culture which encourages the...

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