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This study examines the concept of social advocacy and the forms of advocacy employed by two and contemporary  Igbo playwright Akoma  and Chukwezi in Obidiya and Udo ka Mma these plays are known to have been nurtured under very harsh economic, moral and political condition to extra-try the contemporary attitude of local chiefs. The research methodology should be based on the Marxist approach which is the theory of Kari Max (1818-83) favouring state control of production and a society without a class structure . The Marxist approach to literature and art conceives of authentic literature  as that which is able to  showcase the plight of the masses.    



1.0   Play is another basic components otherwise called (literary genres). These genres are basically three (the primary literary organs), with their attendants ancillary organs. Drama or play is another problematic area in literature. This is not unconnected with the erroneous behalf many scholar hitherto had about it. To some, drama or play has no story to tell, while to some others, ability to cram written materials is sine quanon to the mastery of plays.

          In the actual sense, drama is an all-inclusive academic discipline which uses all branches of learning that bear open dramatic impulse to vivify different situation in life. Eclectically, it makes use of each and every single discipline into one unified body of knowledge for man to understand this life better.

According to professor Barin Wey,

                             drama is to practice living.  in his view drama or

                             play is a story presented on the stage by actors and

                             actresses, before an audience, through language or mine

                              with the end of light scenery  and costume.

          Aristotle on his part sees drama as imitated human action to him, through their actions and conversations, the audience understand the story, the them and the plot. Another school of thought sees drama as

                             Enlightenment through entertainment using

                             characters (actors) actresses), story, prop and


A critical synthesis of the above definitions points to one significant point about the concept of drama as a literary genre.  That play or drama, in addition to helping to points inculcate in scholars the skills of concentrated and courteous attention to other speakers, helps the scholars to actuating clear enunciation and full and flexible use of the mechanism of speech. The watch word of every piece of drama is called a playwright. Simply put, there fore, is the enactment of life on stage principally  meant to inform, educate and entertain the reading or watching  audience. The two playwrights which, the researcher is studying, focus their information to educate the society on the social advocacy found in their two play’s namely Obidiya and Udo ka mma. In Obidiya, Akoma express his views and actions in a tragic mood. The chief protagonist Oriaku bobbles with use in the course of the play or story but suddenly changed in his wheel of fortune, death results as his ultimate end Oraku portrays in the society as the contemporary chief who uses their power to subdue their kings man and usurp their land by force.

          They even went to court with them and still uses assassains to eliminate them. But in it, the fortune of the protagonists hero end in serious   misfortunes characterized  by pitiful, fearful,  sorrowful episodes as in the case of Oriaku. There is always the influence  of supernatural elements  or forces such as ghost, witeches or otherwise, like which often cause the misfortune  of tragic hero eithier by  his error of judgments or otherwise as in Obidiya.

          However, in Udo ka mma, it is class of play or drama originated from the Elizabethan and Jucobean eras of literally Udo ka mma, as the name depicts show the principles of both tragedy and comedy in characteristics, it mingles charater of high and low family background in the play the, episode, the action  of the characters seem to be leading to a tragic end until an unexpected reversal of misfortune to fortune which brings about a happy end to the play. For example in Merchant of Venice by W. Shakespare. Ego as an eagle women change the harsh society of Umuobia through her love to Dike.                                 

1.1 These two plays Obidiya and Udo ka mma were written by two authors   namely, Enyinna Akoma (1977) and Analechi Barnabas (Chukuezi M. 1974) advocating for tolerance in a tragic mood to bring about peace, to preach against greed, which have been the problem of the Igbo in particular and the world generally. Akoma expresses his views through the power of advocacy, the engine of strategy `using tragic ending in his play Obidiya( 1977).  The essence is to bring about a change in the society.

          Chukuezi’s Udo ka mma (1974), uses dialogue to advocate for justice in the society. In the play, the playwright is advocating for peace as a vital tool for social change and restructuring. The focus of this thesis is to discover the use to which playwrights put their plays to inculcate justice and fair play in solving social problems among members of society. 

          According to Gwin Robert P (1978), advocacy means;

                             To plead, pleading for a support, to plead the cause

of any one in a court of justice, by a  counsel to

 argue in favour of

Odenigbo Bartholomew (2008) state that.

A social advocate is one who purports to assist

the public at large in most cause in a particular


Again according to Garner (1999), advocacy

depicts, the work or profession of an advocate.

Furthermore, a social advocate, is an advocate who purport to represent the public at large in matters of public concern, such as utility votes, or environmental

According to Mendosn Mjulumba Mpofu  (1998:20), social advocacy is the

                   representation done by anyone committed to the

                   concerns of any particular group in society. Such

                   concerns may be rights based or needs based.  

In Encyclopedia Americana,

a social advocate is one who  to represent the

 public at large such as matter of public issues,

 utility rates or environmental quality in the cases

of social” which plays a significant role in modern


However, Igbo drama of social advocacy mean the drama that is use to advocate for social virtue in the society which could be corrected. But for a problem to be identified as a social advocacy, the problem must concerns the whole society it must concern the cause of murder, moral decadence, theft, and immoral action.

According  to Horton  and Lesile (1974) a social problem is

A condition affecting  a significant number of

people in a way considered undesirable , about 

which it is felt that something can be done through

collective social action”.

This implies that for a problem to be defined and addressed as a social problem in a society. It must be an undesirable condition that affects a large number. Finally, advocacy means to educate, to create awareness to all the social advocacies. Likewise, plays  of social advocacy is “a, play that is used to portray societal virtues by pointing out first, social vices and their corresponding consequences. The result of evil in plays instructs men with soul to act rightly. 

However According to Mendson Mulumba, a social worker, social advocacy

is the representation done by anyone committed

to the concerns of  any particular such  group in

the society. Such concerns may be right based.

 There also different types of advocacies namely.

i.                   Citizen advocacy. A one to one partnership between two people. The citizen advocate is a volunteer who usually forms a long term relationship with their partner and takes a personal interest  in  that their partners invest are effectively represented. The relationship is based on trust commitment and loyalty. Independent (issue based) advocacy it can also be called crisis or case advocacy. A one to one partnership between two people, often provided by paid advocates. They also shares the same principles as citizen advocacy, but is usually a short term one-off involvement, delay with a specific issue in a person life. The relationship is normally time limited, but may last for several months.

ii.                 Self Advocacy:  It is seen by many in the advocacy movement to be the most ideal form of advocacy and one which all other types of advocacy should be aiming to work towards people speaking out for themselves  to express their own interests.

iii.              Group Advocacy: It is where people came together to represent shared interests or goals and works by offering mutual  support skills development  and common call for change with the intention of developing or changing services.

iv.              Peer Advocacy: It gives support from advocates who themselves have experience of using particular services such as mental health or learning disabilities services can involves people speaking up for those who cannot do so them serves and may link with group advocacy.

v.                 Legal Advocacy: It is representation by legally qualified advocate, usually barristers or solicitors.

vi.              Professional Advocacy: It is representation by members of services involved  in a person’s life  for eg social workers or health workers. Whist this is an important form of advocacy, most independent advocacy agencies would stress the limitations of this type of advocacy and recognize the potential conflict of interest that may arise out of  professionals advocating on their  service users behalf.

vii.            Statutory Advocacy: This is where there is a statutory  duty to provide advocacy following government legislation  such as independent mental health advocacy (IMHA) & independent mental capacity advocacy ( IMCA).  

Advocacy represents the series of actions taken and issues highlighted to change  the “what is” into a “what should be”, considering that this “what should be” is a more decent and a more just society  full citation needed. Those  actions, which vary with the political, economic and social environment in which they are conducted, have several points in common. It is a political process by an individual or group which aims to influence public policy and resource allocation decision within  political, economic, and social system and institution. Advocacy can include many activities that a person or organization undertakes including media campaigns, public speaking commissioning and publishing  research or conducting exit poll or the file of an amicus brief.

Lobbying o (Lobby group) is a form of advocacy where a direct  approach is made to legislators on an issue which plays a significant role in modern politics research has started unfolding how advocacy groups in U.S and Canada are using social media to facilitate  civic engagement and collective action. There are several forms of advocacy, each representing a different approach in away to initiate changes in the society. The most popular forms is a social justice advocacy.

This is refered to where the community of Umuabia needs a new approach to their style of the local chief who uses power to urusp the land of the poor in their community. That was why although it is true, the initial definition does not encourages the notions of power relations, people’s participation and vision of a just society as promoted by social justice advocates. For them advocacy represents the series of actions taken and issues highlighted to change the what is into a “what should be”, considering.


Igbo play of social advocacy is an important integral part of our daily lives. It attracted the attention of Igbo literary artist whose work it is to show to case, of all aspects of any given society, past, present, and future, through creative writing. This is why Moody (1968 :121) explains literature

as a mirror through which the writer represent

the society in its ideas and its through, its visions

and its ways of life. Just as different individuals,

 house different stories both good and bad ideas

 to talk about social advocacy based on their

 various experiences.

Igbo literary artiss have reflected in the two plays Obidiya at Udokamma based on the matters in different shapes and seize in their literary works.

          The focus of the present study will be on two plays. They intention is to find out various ways the two Igbo playwrights Akoma and Chwkuezi) used the plays  to show social advocacy as practices and impact in the individual involved and the society in general. There have been majority of cases of wrong handling of justices and fair play in solving social problems among members of the society. Some Igbo literary artists have captured these injustices and their problems in their works.

          Therefore, an assessment of how some Igbo literary artists have portrayed various social advocacy in our society is deemed necessary. The aim is to show what a genuine correction means to the society. The study is also in tended to bring to focus what should be seen or regarded as a change and to built a new nation as propagated by Dukwe in (2009) who came up with a reformation to impact a new change for the betterment of the poor masses. It is hoped that if this is achieved it will contribute in no small measure in making our society a better place, hence this research work on Igbo drama of social advocacy


In recent times, that people have been looking at Igbo plays from the perspectives of styles, and other approaches without looking at the Marxist approach in the plays. But disregard the advocacy approaches, however, many work had been done on the advocacy on Igbo plays and have been expressed as a social advocacy for social restricting.  

Hence, because the thesis is using Marxist approach where we talk about the bourgeois and proletariats, or the upper class and the lower class.  The two plays Obidiya  and Udoka mma which has a tragic mood, and where people died and a lot of abominations took place needed a social change. While Akoma was only able to write Obidiya (1997) before he died  Chuekuezi (1974) channeled his play to social advocacy of justice and four plays which lither to elude the poor because of the ordinate ambition of the rich.

1.3              OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY.

The major aim of thesis is to examine Obidiya and Udokamma as a social advocacy, and also different forms of social advocacies, practiced in the dramatic genres as exemplified in the plays under study.

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