Journal of Language, Linguistics and Literature
Articles Information
Journal of Language, Linguistics and Literature, Vol.1, No.2, Apr. 2015, Pub. Date: Apr. 8, 2015
Death and the Paradox of Rebirth in Esiaba Irobi’s Theatre: The Fronded Circle as Paradigm
Pages: 24-29 Views: 4011 Downloads: 1913
[01] Samuel O. Chukwu-Okoronkwo, Department of Mass Communication, Abia State University, Uturu, Nigeria.
Despite the intense feeling of aversion which the mere portrait of death perhaps invokes on most living, the truism that death is a necessary end remains, nevertheless, immutable. Irobi was never pretentious about his understanding of this timeless truth. Through the aesthetics of his art he had always reinforced his belief in the ineluctable link between life and death and also drawn his audiences’ attention and consciousness to the grim reality of this seeming fatalistic phenomenon. Beyond mere cessation of life, however, Irobi’s portrait of death as a necessary end in his theatre reaches a transcendental dimension. This transcendence is realized in The Fronded Circle in the manner in which the tragic atmosphere that dominates the play from the opening scene, and culminates in a lethal ritual transition, is eventually mitigated with the birth of a new male child, in whom the future is symbolically embodied, thus evincing Irobi’s conscious exploration of the ritual performance tradition as a process of regeneration of society as highlighted in this study. The paper therefore reinforces Irobi’s indisputable belief in the importance of ritual as an integral part of the African theatre.
Death, Ritual Performance Tradition, Society, Societal Regeneration, African Theatre
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