He studied at the University College, Ibadan (1952-1954), and later at University of Leeds.
He has taught literature in the Universities of Lagos, Ibadan, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (formerly Ife) where he is also Professor Emiritus.
Soyinka, a globetrotter, is a professor of creative writing at the English Department of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Soyinka also taught at Cornell University and Emory University in Atlanta, US.
He has been a visiting professor at the Universities of Cambridge, Sheffield, and Yale.
The man known for his no nonsense approach to issues, especially those touching on human rights, has played an active role in Nigeriaâs political history.
He has consistently been a fierce critic of Nigerian military dictators and those of their ilk in the African continent and globally.
He made a broadcast in 1965 demanding for the cancellation of the rigged Western Regional Election following his seizure of the Western Nigeria Broadcasting Service Studio.
As a result of his stand on truth and justice, he had a brush with the law and was arrested, arraigned in court, but was freed on a technicality.
During the Biafran Civil War in Nigeria, he was arrested and sent to prison for his role in trying to broker peace between the warring parties.
Political activism has often exposed him to personal risks, with his confinement during General Gowonâs regime. General Sani Abacha also pronounced a death sentence on him (1993-1998) in absentia.