Photo of Nduka Otiono

Nduka Otiono

Assistant Professor

Degrees:Ph.D. ( University of Alberta)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 2410
Office:435 Paterson Hall

Nduka Otiono is an Assistant Professor and Graduate Programme Coordinator at the Institute of African Studies, Carleton University, Ottawa. He obtained his PhD in English from the University of Alberta where he won numerous awards including the Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Scholarship, and was nominated for the Governor General’s Gold Medal for academic distinction. He has held postdoctoral fellowships at Brown University where he was also appointed a Visiting Assistant Professor and the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship at Carleton University. His professional distinctions include a Capital Educator’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and a Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) Early Career Award for Research Excellence. He is twice winner of the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship. He had been General Secretary of Association of Nigerian Authors, member of the Nigerian chapter of UNESCO’s Committee on Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage, and founding member of the Board of the $100,000 annual Nigerian Prize for Literature.

A fellow of the William Joiner Centre for War and Social Consequences, University of Massachusetts, Boston, his interdisciplinary research focuses on what he identifies as “street stories” or popular urban narratives in postcolonial Africa, and how they travel across multiple popular cultural platforms such as the news media, film, popular music, and social media. Beyond the cultural relevance of such little genres of everyday life also known as rumours, urban myths or legends, Otiono explores their political relevance and incarnation as “street stories” and how everyday people speak to power through such informal channels. His research draws from his background as a journalist and cultural activist in Nigeria. He has recently completed a five-country research tour of Africa for his first academic monograph on street stories in Africa.

Also a writer, he is the author of The Night Hides with a Knife (short stories), which won the ANA/Spectrum Prize; Voices in the Rainbow (Poems), a finalist for the ANA/Cadbury Poetry Prize; Love in a Time of Nightmares (Poems) for which he was awarded the James Patrick Folinsbee Memorial Scholarship in Creative Writing. He has co-edited We-Men: An Anthology of Men Writing on Women (1998), and Camouflage: Best of Contemporary Writing from Nigeria (2006).

His research interests include Cultural Studies, Oral Literature, Postcolonial Studies, Media and Communication Studies, Globalization and Popular Culture. His research essays have appeared in African Literature Today, Transfers: Interdisciplinary Journal of Mobility Studies, Wasafiri, Contemporary Literary Criticism, and Investigating Canadian Identities: 10th Anniversary Contributions, amongst others.