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Allusions in Wole Soyinka’s A Dance of the Forests and Kongi’s Harvest

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.8, No. 3)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 036-043

Keywords : Nigeria; African past; allusion; affirmation; opposition; glory; decline;

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This study deals with Wole Soyinka's two plays, A Dance of the Forests and Kongi's Harvest with the aim is to show the use of allusions in the depiction of the glory and the decline of the African past. The two plays, from the same literary tradition enables us to explore Nigerian viewpoints of ancient and recent history. By appropriating the discussions of Gerard Genette, Michael Leddy, William Irwin, John Campbell and Allan Pasco on the use of allusion in literature, we argue that when the author refers to history in his works, he employs allusions to affirm or oppose certain notions. Wole Soyinka alludes to history to affirm the the glory of the African past and also to oppose to some of the other facts that prove the collapse of the African empires. Both plays implicitly utilise the glory and the collapse of African empires but each one employs these incidents according to the viewpoint and cultural background of its author. Hence, the different employment of history reveals contestations of worldviews which are symptomatic of the ideological clashes between the Africans among themselves, and the Europeans.

Last modified: 2023-05-16 20:14:50