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In the theatre, play adaptation specifically addresses the situation where an author uses an existing work of another author to create a new work. Scholars over the years have written on adaptation techniques but adaptations of one work in different localities have been relatively not covered. Hence, the need to do a comparative study of the adaptation of Sophocles’ Antigone by Osofisan of Nigeria and Yankah of Ghana. Through a review of a related literature, content and comparative analysis, it was discovered that adaptation is a concept that should be explored extensively. It has also be discovered that in the comparative study of the two adapters. Osofisan and Yankah, though from the same region-Africa still share some convergences and divergences in their adaptation techniques. Therefore, this research has concluded with the point that an adaptation work well done can foster creativity in the adapter.



Title page    -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        i

Certification         -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        ii

Dedication  -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        iii

Acknowledgements        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        iv

Abstract      -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        vii

Table of Contents          -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        viii


1.1. Background of Study       -        -        -        -        -        -        1

1.2. Statement of Problem       -        -        -        -        -        -        5

1.3. Justification of Study       -        -        -        -        -        -        5

1.4. Scope of Study       -        -        -        -        -        -        -        6

1.5. Significance of Study        -        -        -        -        -        -        6

1.6. Limitations of Study        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        7

1.7. Methodology of Research          -        -        -        -        -        -        7

1.8. Organization of Study      -        -        -        -        -        -        7


2.1. Concept of Adaptation     -        -        -        -        -        -        9

2.2. Adaptation Techniques    -        -        -        -        -        -        17


3.1. Synopsis of Antigone by Sophocles    -        -        -        -        24

3.2. Synopsis of Osofisan's Tegonni -        -        -        -        -        28

3.3  Analysis of Osofisan's  Tegonni in the context of  Sophocles'

       Antigone        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        34

3.4. Synopsis of Yankah's Dear Blood      -        -        -        -        -        42

3.5. Analysis of Yankah's Dear Blood in the context of

        Sophocles' Antigone        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        52


4.1. Adaptation Techniques in Tegonni      -        -        -        -        61

4.2. Adaptation Techniques in Dear Blood          -        -        -        -        67

4.3. Comparative Study of Adaptation Techniques in (Osofisan’s) Tegonni  

         and (Yankah’s) Dear Blood.    -        -        -        -        -        69


5.1     Summary of Findings    -        -        -        -        -        -        72

5.2     Recommendations         -        -        -        -        -        -        -        73

5.3     Conclusion -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        75

Works Cited -       -        -        -        -        -        -        -        76



1.1     Background of Study

The art of writing plays has spanned several centuries. This art has gained prominence more and more from the ancient era of the Greeks up till the contemporary period. Plays are usually written not just for the purpose of reading but performance.  The playwright's script must be acted or performed as theatre does not exist in the imagination but in performance. The playwright is a reflection of his environment, as such he writes plays that show the realities of his society. Such realities as the economic situation, religious beliefs, cultural activities, festivities, rituals and so on. Whereas, the playwright writes from his opinion, ideas, emotions, background and philosophy; another playwright can pick interest in the presentation of his ideas, philosophy and background and then decide to create his own version of what the first author had already written; this art is known as adaptation. It could also be seen as the process that involves changing to fit a purpose or situation. This can be exemplified by a 2-year-old toddler who is being admitted in a crèche. For the first few days, the child will usually cry and want to go back home because he is not used to the school environment and the faces there. As he gets to attend the school for a month or more, the reaction changes. He becomes acquainted with the environment and may even start playing with other pupils. The child here can be said to have adapted to the school environment. Adaptation hence can be said to be a process where one gets acquainted with a change from the regular environment.

According to Johnson, adaptation is a form of creative writing that is based on an already existing work. It is a form of re-writing or writing afresh what had already been written by another person, other than the original source (Johnson, class note). An author or playwright may choose to adapt another's work because of the dissatisfaction in the treatment of the subject matter in a play by the original author or playwright.  He may also adapt a play for the single purpose of de-theming the old work, transforming it in such manner that it takes no semblance of the old work. This can be achieved by converting a comedy to tragedy, hero to heroine and so on. An adapter can also adapt a play for the fascination with the writer's position. In this case, the adapted work often uses similar positions as that of the old writer.  This kind of adaptation according to Johnson is referred to as celebrative position. Works that take this form of adaptation include: Ola Rotimi's The Gods are not to Blame, which is an adaptation of Oedipus Rex, Efua Sutherland's Edufa from Euripedes' Oreistes, Osofisan's Tegonni from Sophocles' Antigone, and many more.

Whatever the reason for the playwright's adaptation, all literary works can be adapted from one genre to another and from one medium to the other. For instance, a play can be adapted to a prose work, poetry can be adapted to prose or drama, prose can as well be adapted to poetry or drama. It could be taken from a stage drama to film media, from film to a radio drama or a film to stage drama. Various styles and methods have been employed by adapters in adapting another author's or playwright's work. Asagba states that, adaptation has been a source of cross-breeding between all the genres of literature and among the media. Ultimately, the “adapted work ends up on the screen, the live stage or print medium literature in a sort of recycling romance” (135). Sequel to the above, an adapter must be conversant with the tenets of each genre of literature and media. For example, the adapter needs to know the basic tenets that must qualify a drama form to be called drama. With this knowledge, he then adapts an existing work of another genre to satisfy its basic elements.

The pre-occupation of this work is to study the various adaptation techniques, approaches to adaptation, adaptation principles and a comparative study of these in Osofisan's Tegonni and Yankah's Dear Blood in the context of the original work - Antigone.  It sets to note the points of convergences and divergences in the two plays compared to the mother play.


1.2     Statement of the Problem

People tend to harbour mind-bugging questions on adaptation and techniques to go about this form of writing. Most amateur authors and playwrights fail in an attempt to adapt an existing work. Most students of literary arts do not also know how to go about an adaptation successfully. This research will examine the two plays which have been written by different playwrights from different environments but both drawing their roots from Greece.  Playwriting students, directing students and acting students will find this work very useful when handling adaptation.

1.3     Justification of Study

Adaptation is not a widely discussed concept in the theatre. Although there are many adapted plays and books in circulation, only few scholars have addressed the concept of adaptation, techniques, principles and approaches to adapting a play. This work will use Tegonni and Dear Blood to study the various adaptation techniques. It will also compare the adaptation approaches and techniques utilized in the adaptation of the two plays.

1.4     Scope of Study

This study envelops the concepts, definition, approaches, principles and techniques of adaptation. It also covers the analysis of Tegonni and Dear Blood, including the comparison of the two plays in relation to the source play-Antigone. It concerns itself with the similarities and differences regarding the adaptation techniques employed in the two plays.

1.5     Significance of Study

This study is significant because it will help student playwrights as well as other literary writers in their adaptation work. It will also help them to know how to adapt a play. It will help the director in understanding a playwright's vision or adapter's vision while putting a work on stage or film.  The work will help the theatre artist in general.


1.6     Limitation of Study

Due to the fact that play adaptation is not vastly talked about by many theatre scholars, the major constraint encountered in the course of this work was the accessibility to adaptation texts, journals and other literature. Other limitations include: financial constraints and other material resources.

1.7     Methodology of the Research

The method of data collection applied in this work is content and comparative analysis, which entails the study of specific plays to ascertain their similarities and differences in the context of the adaptation techniques and approaches. The secondary sources of data collection include: textbooks, journals, articles and online materials.

1.8     Organization of Study

This research comprises of five chapters. Chapter one, which is the Introduction is the introductory part of the work which is concerned with getting the reader of this research acquainted with the structure and motive of this work. Chapter Two is the Literature Review. It contains various literatures and reviews that relate to adaptation, its approaches, principles and techniques. Chapter Three is centered on the analysis of the plays: Antigone, Tegonni and Dear Blood. It gives a vivid exposition about the adaptation approaches and techniques and their relationship with the source play.  Chapter Four is titled Comparative Study of Adaptation Techniques in Osofisan's Tegonni and Yankah's Dear Blood. This chapter studies the similarities and differences between Tegonni, Dear Blood and Antigone through their various techniques. Chapter Five is the last chapter which deals with the summary of the whole research, gives appropriate recommendations and conclusion.


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