The Human Being Is an Incurable Disease (Mutum Cuta Ne Marar Magani)

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Title The Human Being Is an Incurable Disease (Mutum Cuta Ne Marar Magani)
Author or Owner Ahmad al-Tijani Tukur al-Kanawi aka Ahmad Tukur and Abubakar Mas’ud (authors), Paden (owner)
Subject Ethics, Human Nature, Inconsistency, Hypocrisy, Greed, Ingratitude, Dishonestly, Repentance
Content This poem is concerned with the uncertain and sometimes wicked nature of humankind. Hence the title Mutum Cuta Ne Marar Magani (The Human Being is an Incurable Disease). The poem has a cover page, with an introduction of the authors Ahmad al-Tijani Tukur and Abubakar Mas’udu, and the publication year (1963). The short introduction of the poem is in Arabic, a demonstration of the poets’ knowledge of both Arabic and Hausa Ajami. The poem describes humans as ignorant, wicked, inconsistent, materialistic, and ever ready to exploit one another. Comparing humans and animals, the poets describe how human beings constantly condemn one another through hatred, jealousy, and the desire to dominate. It ends with a doxology in Arabic (as it started), thanking Allah for the wisdom, will, and grace to be able to compose a poem on human nature.
Genre Poetry
Language Hausa
Script Hausa Ajami
Manuscript condition 8 pages. 18 x 25. 5 cm. (2 pages text + front and back covers and title page)

Condition: Lithographed copy. Fully vocalized.
Title page has a picture of the author.
Copied at: Kano

Type Lithograph
Publisher Oluseyi Press, Kano
Provenance Kano, Nigeria
Source Reference Ahmad al-Tijani Tukur al-Kanawi, “Mutum Cuta Ne Marar Magani” (1963). Courtesy of Northwestern University Libraries. Click here for the source link.
Access condition and copyright These materials are subject to copyright and are distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. For use, distribution or reproduction beyond these terms, contact Professor Fallou Ngom (
Contributors Jennifer J Yanco, Mustapha Hashim Kurfi, Garba Zakari, Lori de Lucia, Babacar Dieng, Rebecca Shereikis, Daivi Rodima-Taylor, Alison Parker, Frank Antonelli, Mark Lewis, Shawn Provencal, Eric Schmidt.
Required citation information Fallou Ngom (PI), Jennifer Yanco,  Mustapha Hashim Kurfi, Garba Zakari, Babacar Dieng, Daivi Rodima-Taylor, and Rebecca Shereikis. 2022. “The Human Being Is an Incurable Disease.”


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