The author first presents an assessment of the early missionaries' contribution to Malawian literature, and a brief examination of how Malawi's post-independence politics affected Malawi's literary landscapes, in particular the production of literature in local languages. He then outlines the concerns of later writers, considering cultural, traditional and religious collisions, and the portrayal of women in various texts; and uses gender as a tool to analyse oral literature. He also analyses the effects of censorship on literature in Malawi, and why most post-independence novels have chosen safe topics, or practised in self-censorship. He then turns to writers who have engaged in taboo subjects or critical politics, identifying the strategies they have adopted to avoid censorship. Each section includes detailed analysis of literary texts by, inter alia, Zingani, Chimombo, Jolly Max Ntaba, Malunga and Shumba.