The novel allowed him to expand on themes already expressed in his stage dramas and to present a sweeping view of Nigerian life in the years immediately following independence. A telephone is an instrument that primarily transmits voices, here it becomes a medium for silence also. Irony differs from sarcasm in greater subtlety and wit. Soyinka went along with the lady on the phone which shows how stupid people actually sound. Humanity has the awareness to recognize these differences and Soyinka uses the racism of the landlady to show her ignorance of the situation. I felt I am a foreigner in my own land. He presents the characters and their mental attitudes for ridicule, sympathy, and amusement.
He is a man of totally confused values. The speaker's intelligence is further shown through his use of sarcasm and wit in response to the landlady's questions. He begins in a seemingly objective, levelheaded way, judging the location and price of the property. Telephone Conversation by Wole Soyinka. The poet puts into his mouth words which in their dissonance refute his claims.
To many critics and scholars, Soyinka is the preeminent African activist-writer of the twentieth century, and, when turning to his poetry, a writer who clearly favors the dramatic over the experimental or the lyric. In 1967, during the Nigerian Civil War he was arrested by the Federal Government of General Yakubu Gowon and put in solitary confinement for his attempts at brokering a peace between the warring Nigerian and Biafran parties. Parker misleads the reader in the first and second. Conversation Analysis: An Introduction, London: Wiley-Blackwell. There are moments which sadden or anger; but they do not diminish the fun. Doing Phonology, Manchester: Manchester University Press. Britain was also amongst other early capitalist societies to utilize the slave trade, which positioned itself neatly to benefit economically from the dramatic African migration that came to define the 1950s.
Insert expansions interrupt the activity under way, but are still relevant to that action. Ojaide, Tanure, The Poetry of Wole Soyinka, Malthouse Press, 1994, pp. From the word 'indifferent', the landlady seems not too aware who her house is rented to, however, she does aware. Making the readers realize that every negative aspect has its positive side. Nothing remains for the poet, he says, but confession.
The lighter the complexion, the better a coloured person feels. Due to the tensions and concerns created by immigration, the British parliament decided to restrict immigration in 1905, a decision that has repercussions even today as the country continues to maintain very strong legislative control of immigration levels. The African man now shouts out loud saying that he is black but he is not that black for anyone to be put to shame. Racism in Britain Throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, racial policies and trade practices were a central mechanism for controlling a disenfranchised work force comprised largely of Scottish and Irish workers. The speaker describes the buttons in the phone booth, the foul smell that seems to always coexist with public spaces, and a bus driving by outside.
To recognize Soyinka's preoccupation with the racial overtones of language itself is to discover one of the sources of his creative energy. Shamed By ill-mannered silence, surrender Pushed dumbfounded to beg simplification. Undoubtedly, the poet' s power of imagination enables him to visualize an affluent and sophisticated British land- lady belonging to the so-called progressive and urban world on the other side. Jeyifo, Biodun, Wole Soyinka: Politics, Poetics, and Postcolonialism, Cambridge University Press, 2004. The theme was the establishment of a dictatorship in an African state; and the venal. At such a crucial juncture, he makes a desperate and silly attempt pleading her to come and take a good look at him but could not prevent the situation from getting any better.
A poet as well as a dramatist and essayist, Soyinka has published several collections, including Idanre and Other Poems 1967 , Ogun Abibiman 1976 , Mandela's Earth and Other Poems 1988 , and Samarkand and Other Markets I Have Known 2002. Accused of helping Biafran fighters buy military jets, Soyinka spent two years in prison, despite the fact that he was never formally charged with any crime. Although the landlady refuses to rent an apartment to him because of his African heritage and the supposed savagery that accompanies it, the speaker is clearly a well educated individual. Friction, caused-- Foolishly, madam--by sitting down, has turned My bottom raven black--One moment, madam! Telephone Conversation is one poem that upholds the fact that there is nothing wrong in being black. Today: Although such racial stereotyping still occurs in Britain and elsewhere, the language has changed slightly to reflect national or regional distinctions. In 1965, he made a broadcast demanding the cancellation of the rigged Western Nigeria Regional Elections following his seizure of the Western Nigeria Broadcasting Service studio. Most of that time, he was kept in solitary confinement.
Instead, Soyinka outlines the conversation between the man and the landlady with humorous undertones to better emphasize the unfairness of her treatment. The drama Madmen and Specialists was about a immature physician who returned from war trained in the ways of anguish and patterns his new accomplishments on his apparently huffy old male parent. Coincidentally, in this moment of realignment, grammar itself is revisited. Soyinka, along with other pro-democracy activists, was charged with treason for his criticism of the military regime. The city saw a substantial influx of African immigrants throughout the post-war decades, a period that also saw a rise of racial tensions in the country, so such conversations would not have been unfamiliar.