SATIRE AS A POLITICAL ACTIVISM IN THE WORKS OF MIESOINUMA MINIMA: A CASE STUDY OF ODUM EGEGE AND THE REFERENDUM

SATIRE AS A POLITICAL ACTIVISM IN THE WORKS OF MIESOINUMA MINIMA: A CASE STUDY OF ODUM EGEGE AND THE REFERENDUM

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ABSTRACT

Ethnic dichotomy and dual loyalty are two major problems Nigeria is facing in its developing state. It is often portrayed in various genres to canvass for change. This work focuses on satire as a political instrument of commentary in the works of Miesoinuma Minima. The work shall therefore examine Minima’s the Referendum and Odum Egege as satiric dramatization in socio political issues. Satire is a technique employed by writers to expose and criticize vices in the society using humour, irony, exaggeration or ridicule. The aim is to improve humanity by criticizing its follies and foibles. The paper argues that the way political issues are unfolding in Nigeria, the most pungent genre that can appeal and equal attack is satire. Politics is indispensable in the lives of Nigerian citizens today; but the intrigues and style of politics is causing more laughter than comedy itself. It is better to address extreme divide and senseless political upheaval through a pungent genre that can bring fast change in Nigeria polity. The method of data collection used in this research is content analysis which deals with the study of an chosen texts as the primary course of data collection the secondary sources of data collection constituted library sources. Such as text books, journals, newspapers and online materials. The awareness created by satire enables people to understand these deficiencies to take positive actions to achieve change. Drama, through satire serves as an alternative that provoke political activism which leads to because it intends to educate dramatists, theatre practitioners, theoreticians, scholars, politicians and the entire public on the importance of satire as one of the political activities in the country.   

CHAPTER ONE

1.1              INTRODUCTION

Satire is a genre of comedy that has been predominantly used by playwrights to criticize, expose, sensitize, ridicule the follies and shortcomings of man. It is a genre of comedy that has evolved from the classical Greek society, through the work of Aristophanes. Aristophanes comedy portrayed and exposed topical issues regarding the political atmosphere in ancient Greece. Brocket submits that “Greek comedy was usually concerned with the current issues in politics” (75).

            Right from the Greek society, satire has become a veritable tool used by playwrights and dramatics to address socio-political misnomer in various societies. It treats trivial issues that showcase man’s folly and unreasonable application of his thought and it is expected to have a happy ending reflecting continuity of life. Satire creates a platform for the unveiling of human’s socio-political vices, mistakes and negativities with the aim of correcting these ills. It is a genre of comedy that canvasses for change in human dealings as it concerns the society.

This research work focuses on the usage and application of satire by playwrights and dramatist for political participation. The work also emphasizes on discovering the use of satire in describing the socio-political atmosphere as it is found in Miesoinuma Minima’s THE REFERENDUM and ODUM EGEGE. As a tool for agitation, sensitization, satire becomes a necessity to analyze the political environment as it is seen in these plays.

1.2       STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

            The political ambience has been contaminated with negativities that have bedeviled the full participation of people in political activities. So many misnomers have creeped into the political system that has led to unwanted results that has marred the growth and development of the country. These have been corruption, rigging, oppression, neglection, deceit, and many others that has become a routine in the political system in the country. This unjust and corrupt system has been a menace that has agonized the people and public. A situation in which the so-called political leaders see themselves as autonomous, all-powerful and dictatorial, in the upsurge for a more pragmatic medium to address political dichotomy and the restiveness that garners from this act, drama has proved to be a qualified tool for it. Through satire, drama is able to address these political weaknesses in the most pungent comic manner. Satire, in this sense, wraps both scorn and mirth in order to showcase this problem and proffer tangible solution to them. Nigeria’s political milieu has suffered these setbacks, minima’s usage of satire as the suitable genre of dramaturgy become veracious to address and reflect the political activities in the country. 

1.3       AIMS OF THE STUDY

            Satire is a literally work that holds up man’s vices and follies to ridicule and scorn. Although, it is meant to be humorous, its purpose is for constructive criticism of social or political activities. It is an important tool for playwrights and dramatists to drawn the attention to both particular and wider socio-political issues in the society.

            The aim of this research is to explore the use and functionality of satire as a means of facilitating political activities. Satire becomes a veritable tool for political participation, socialization, education and criticism. The work aims to address the political mood in the country and also show that satire is important in socio-political engagement in the country.

1.4       SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

            The work is significant because it intends to educate dramatists, theatre practitioners, theoreticians, scholars, politicians and the entire public on the importance of satire as one of the political activities in the country. As a long-standing genre of dramaturgy, that has contributed to the political growth in various societies from the classical era to the modern society. It is, therefore, pertinent to draw a closer look at employing this medium in promoting political activities.

            Many dramatists, playwrights, political activities have supported satiric premises as a relevant medium in projecting politics in any given society. Hence, this work buttresses the fact that satire is one medium that cannot be overlooked in terms of political participation.

1.5       SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This thesis envelops the concepts of satire and political activism. It digs deep into the historic usage and application of satire. Also, the work uncovers the concept of political activism in Nigeria. The research work also emphasizes on satire and political activism as it is inherent in Minima’s THE REFERENDUM and ODUM EGEGE.

1.6       METHODOLOGY OF THE RESEARCH

            The method of data collection used in this research is content analysis which deals with the study of our chosen texts as the primary sources of data collection. The secondary sources of data collection constituted library sources, such as textbooks, journals, newspapers, and soon and online materials.

1.7       ORGANIZATION OF THE WORK

            This research comprises of five chapters chapter one is entitled general introduction, which looks are background of the study, statement of the problem, aims of the study, scope, significance, methodology, of the study, and the organization of the work. Chapter two is the review of literature; which looks at the concept of political review, concept of satire and political activism in Nigeria. Chapter three is titled an appraisal of Miesoinuma Minima’s ODUM EGEGE and THE REFERENDUM, which deals with the thematic focus and critical analysis of both texts. Chapter four is titled satire and political activism in ODUM EGEGE, and THE REFERENDUM; there will be clear investigation of satire and political activism in these plays, and a comparative analysis of these policies. Chapter five is the conclusion-summary and findings are postulated.


 


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