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Project Topic:

TRADITION AND CHANGE IN ZULUS SOFOLAS WEDLOCK OF THE GODS AND TESS ONWUEMES THE BROKEN CALABASH

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 Format: MS WORD ::   Chapters: 1-5 ::   Pages: 56 ::   Attributes: literature review ::   4,010 people found this useful

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

  1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The perception of women has been that of weakened relevance and subordination tied to the miscellaneous oppressions they face in a world referred to as “a man’s world”. The world at large views the women as the weaker sex in different conditions – mental and physical disabilities. In the midst of such challenges, some women have made enormous strides in distinguishing themselves amongst other women, making gigantic impacts which will everlastingly be remembered.

Some societies in Africa have had women who ruled kingdoms and led conquest wars. Examples of such recognized cum documented women are Berber queen known as the Kahina of the Maghreb (17th century), Magajiyas of Duara (9th century), Queen Amina of Zazzau (16th century), Nzinga of Angola (19th century), and Nehanda of Zimbawe (19th century). Feminist thinkers have argued and are still arguing that Western feminism derived much of its inspiration from Africa. Women in Africa have suffered severe conditions such as growing and harvesting crops on farmlands during pregnancy, as well as fetching water and logs of wood with children strapped to their backs during nursing with little or no help from their husbands or guardians.

Women, in general, have endured emphatic stigmatization and oppression in their homes and elsewhere. Education had been the male child’s birthright, with the enforcement of domestic duties on the girl child growing into womanhood with the conception of being the weaker sex not only in physical strength but also in the psyche. In many societies, especially in Africa, man’s acknowledgement of the input and contributions of women on the growth of the economy, family, and nation as a whole is still farfetched. Nigeria today is approaching her 54th independence, and in all these years, many theatre practitioners and dramatists have come on the scene to develop Nigeria’s theatre. Zulu Sofola, first female professor of theatre Arts in Africa; Julie Okoh, a professor and Tess Onwueme (PhD) of whom Dr. Sonja Darlington refers to as the first African female dramatist to break into the literary rank of Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, and Ngugi wa Thiong‟o are three of those. The development of Nigerian theatre is not “man-made” rather it is of the inclusion and contribution of the women folk who have immensely helped in the building of Nigerian theatre to the standard it is today. Women have been highly active and impacting in all aspects and roles in the theatre, such as in playwriting, directing, acting, singing, management, choreographing. They have also written several plays. A popular maxim posits that what men can do women can do better. But is there any validity to this argument in our society today? There have been many cases where women have been denied equal opportunities in terms of their yearnings for exposure, training, practice, and recognition. Yet, women who have shown apt dedication and interest in education and craft have always excelled in their fields of study or practice. Today, we have women addressed as Professors, Doctors, and Honorables. Women are also recognized as tutors, politicians, writers, and so on. Our focus is the accomplishment of jobs done by Zulu Sofola and Tess Onwueme in the field of playwriting in Nigeria. One play each by these two dramatists will be scrutinized, bringing out the feminist elements in each, and how the dramatists have emphasized feminism in their plays. These plays are Wedlock of the Gods (Sofola) and The Reign of Wazobia (Onwueme). The plays have strong themes and subject matters relating to social ills in Nigeria especially as encountered by women mainly of the low and middle classes. This is not to say that women of the high class do not face certain discriminations. They do but to a limit due to their status in the society which can be tied to their educational background or their legal links to persons of influence and affluence.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The Nigerian theatre had been dominated by men, and in their writings, the portrayal of women has been poor in the society, portraying them as house-wives, docile, unexposed, unreasonable, and sometimes even as witches. The negative stereotypes of women have continued to spread into a greater number of Nigerians’ plays authored by male writers. Therefore, there is a tacit agreement in the works of these pioneer male dramatists over the society outlook on women. This is tied to the historical assertion that women have always been constructed as weak and inferior to men. They were socialized to be homemakers and agriculturist (Ityaveryer and Obiajunwa: 3). Zulu Sofola evolved at the time most great Nigerian male dramatists were leading the arts. She debuted in 1991 with The Disturbed Peace of Christmas. Though Sofola was a female, her entry into the intellectual competition did not alter the image of women in literary drama. It only reaffirmed men‟s superiority and supremacy over women. Sofola‟s dramas in addition gave domination to men imaging in the society. Going through her plays, one can observe the regular conflict of the old and new culture, but in ideology the old usually triumphs. Sofola is a traditionalist, for her plays overwhelm and enchant the sacredness of traditions, whereby she never hesitates to bring down any of her characters who dare to go against it. For her, the inviolability of tradition must be maintained and respected at all cost in spite of its inert and unprogressive nature. Therefore, in many of her plays, any attempt by women to break free from this traditional sacredness incurs a vicious backlash. In Wedlock of the Gods, Ogwoma is punished for failing to respect the tradition of observing the period of mourning of her dead husband in spite of the fact that it was a loveless union contracted by force.

Lastly the outstanding foundation laid out by Tess Onwueme is well supported and raised by the women discussed in this phase: the contemporary period. In terms of periodization, this phase can be traced back to the middle 1980s spanning down to the present period. At this time, the Oil boom and political acrobatic had placed Nigeria in danger with the nation‟s economy suffering a backlash of the corruption in high places. Although women still wrote on woman emancipation, they tackled other issues of the day such as economic, social and political issues.

1.3 AIM AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The main aim of the research work is to examine tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash. The specific objectives of the study are:

  1. to determine the type of tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash
  2. to ascertain the causes of change in tradition as they appear in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash
  3.  to investigate the factors affecting tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS

The study came up with research questions so as to ascertain the above stated objectives of the study. The following research questions guide the objectives of the study:

  1. What is the type of tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash?
  2. What are the causes of change in tradition as they appear in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash?
  3.  What are the factors affecting tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash?

1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The study on tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash will be of immense benefit to the entire literature department in the Nigeria tertiary institutions. The study will identify the type of tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash, the causes of change in tradition as they appear in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash and the factors affecting tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash. The study will serve as a repository of information to the other researchers and students that desire to carry out similar research on the above topic. Finally the study will contribute to the body of the existing literature on tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash

1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The study will focus on tradition and change in Zulus sofola’s wedlock of the gods and Tess Onwueme’s the broken calabash   

1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS

Tradition: A tradition is a belief or behavior passed down within a group or society with symbolic meaning or special significance with origins in the past

Change: change, alter, and vary mean to make or become different. Change may be used for making such a difference in a thing that it becomes something else. They've changed the house into a restaurant. Change may also be used for substituting one thing for another

 

 


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Paper Information

Format:ms word
Chapter:1-5
Pages:56
Attribute:literature review
Price:₦3,000
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