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1001 Stories Collection

The Yammering Yam

1001 theyammeringyam
Added on 09th July 2020

Oral tradition Ashanti folktale

Africa Family
1001 , Audio , Text , Storymap

A folktale that shows that all things should be treated with respect.

Story

A farmer, a fisherman, a young woman and the village chief come to learn that all things have feelings and should be treated with respect.

Why we chose it

The Yammering Yam was one of the stories in our original audio stories collection.

Where it came from

The Yammering Yam is an oral tale, traditionally told within circles by members of the Ashanti Tribe of Southern Ghana, West Africa. The story has many different versions, which were primarily circulated in West Africa and passed from generation to generation through story-telling. However, the Atlantic slave trade spread the story to the Caribbean and beyond.

Where it went next

The story has been translated into English and has lost many of its original, typically-African features. Adapted to a modern audience, the yam has also been changed to a papaya, or sweet potato in modern editions. The tale tends to include an increasing number of characters who run to the King, joining Kofi, or the farmer, who before acted alone.

Associated stories

The tale of The Yammering Yam has been adapted by storyteller and writers including Pie Corbett’s The Papaya that Spoke, Chris Smith’s The Sweet-Talking Potato, and Angela Shelf Medearis’ Too much Talk.

Added on 09th July 2020

Oral tradition Ashanti folktale

Africa Family
1001 , Audio , Text , Storymap

Story Resources

  • The Yammering Yam story text PDF (255.97 KB)
    Download