NABTEB GCE 2022 LITERATURE ANSWERS.
Second-Class Citizen depicts ordinary Africans who are naturally blacks, and explores, how the fact of their race inhibits them from enjoying a glorious stay in a foreign land. The title of the novel “Second Class Citizen refers to a substandard, inferior, and black citizen in the novel, the fact that there are second-class citizens and first-class citizens makes racism and identity crisis evident in the novel. The former is associated with the British people, who stand the chance of becoming a partaker of everything the society offers, while the latter which is black (Africans to be precise) have their choices limited. They are not allowed to live with their white counterparts, which is a white dominant community. The blacks are forced to live in slums, while menial jobs are meant for them.
For example, Adah and her family make the theme of racial discrimination (Race) prominent in the novel as an issue that she tries to avoid all to no avail. Adah’s first encounter with race relations occurs when they are still at Ashdown Street, when she is served a notice to quit the house.
Adah has refused to send her children to nursery like everyone else in England. Also, they are Ibos, the hated people because they believe in their own ideologies. The landlady is aware that Adah is expecting a third child and the fact that Vicky has cheated death “Adah is expecting a third child and the fact that Vicky has cheated death “Adah and her husband must go” the landlady affirms. Their search for a new accommodation yields no result. Nearly all the vacant spaces they come across bear an inscription. “Sorry, No colored” no them.
Adah’s house hunting is made more difficult because of racism and identity crisis, for she is black, with two children, and pregnant with another. Race relation has taught her a lesson that her color is something she should be ashamed of. She was never aware of this at home in Nigeria, even when in the midst of whites. As racism is beginning to have a serious psychological effect on her, she vows never to measure up with the white folks-but to live a low lifestyle, and also stop looking for accommodation in a clean, desirable neighborhood. She is now learning to suspect anything beautiful and pure because those things are for the white, not the blacks.
Also, the effect of racial discrimination has made Adah a liar and deceiver such that she had to change her Nigerian-born accent so as to sound like a white lady in order to secure accommodation. Both Adah and Francis still have to visit the white landlady to conceal their black colors and identify without result. It is also the effect of racism that makes Francis burns the manuscript of Adah’s first novel. The Bride Price because he feels that Adah is black, and the writing career is meant for the white alone.
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NABTEB LITERATURE ANSWERS.
The novel is centered on African- American representation of self definition. In the novel, the narrator’s desire to change the course of his story that makes the whites more important than the blacks contributes to the enormous struggles the narrator encountered. No black man is allowed to rise beyond a certain level because of the problem of race and his desire to self-define himself. The protagonist of the novel attributes his invisibility largely to his inability to define himself outside the influence of others. Almost everyone he encounters attempts to tell him who he is, and how he should conduct himself.
At the college for instance, Dr. Bledsoe tells the narrator that he should smile and lie to please the white. The narrator is given an honor to drive one trustee known as Mr. Norton and the narrator is reprimanded for his action at the pub. Also, he is initiated into the brotherhood to become their spoke man, but their selfish aims and objective or too many unreasonable rules makes him back out in the end. At first, the Brotherhood attempts to redefine him by giving him a new name and identity and by having him go through intense instructions to ensure he adapt to the organization’s philosophies. Fortunately, the narrator has to go underground in order to define himself. He does this because he’s not able to finds solution to racial prejudice in his society. His decision to go underground and come back later also portends that the narrator has not relent in his struggle to ameliorate the conditions of his society. This is evident in his enviable conclusion that he said to himself that In going underground I whipped it all except the mind. And the mind has conceived a plan of living must never lose sight of the chaos against which that pattern was concluded. I must come out, I must emerge… And, as I said before a decision has been made, I’m shaking off the old skin and will leave it here in the white. I’m coming out, no less invisible without it, but coming out nevertheless.
Literature Drama & Poetry-Answers
(i)Gender; It does not seem that Soyinka consciously tries to make a statement about gender, but he does so nonetheless. On the one hand, he creates two female characters that are sassy, opinionated, manipulative, and independent. On the other hand, both of them are ultimately pawns in the games of men. Sidi does not want to marry either Lakunle or Baroka, but Baroka tricks her, rapes her, and then gets to marry her. She is an object and nothing more. Sadiku is also tricked, and sees her elation over the Bale’s impotence and the power of women vanish as his plot is made clear. Women may seem like they have power in mid-20th century Nigeria, but they ultimately do not.
(ii)Tradition and Modernity; This is perhaps the most conspicuous theme in the play. It initially seems like Soyinka is setting a clear dichotomy between these two things, tradition embodied by Baroka and modernity embodied by Lakunle. However, as the play progresses Soyinka defies the audience’s assumptions. Lakunle espouses a variety of backwards views and seems to abandon his progressive principles when it is convenient to do so. Similarly, Baroka says he does not hate progress but merely finds its sameness and stagnation boring. He is preparing to use a stamp machine to make the village make money as they do in Lagos. Soyinka thus suggests that progress is not bad, but that it must be done on African terms.
(iii)Trickery and Manipulation; Most of the characters in this play decide to trick and manipulate others in order to achieve their ends. This is perceived to be a much more effective method than being forthright, as the things characters want come at the expense of others’ feelings and wishes. Sidi and Sadiku try to fool the Bale so they can feel a sense of triumph at his humbling, and the Bale fools Sadiku and Sidi so he can subdue Sidi and acquire her as one of his wives. Even though Soyinka carries this out with a light touch and a great deal of witty repartee, the fact remains that there is a lot of lying and manipulation in the play.
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NECO LITERATURE ANSWERS.
(i)Leadership; This theme is predominant in the poem, as it runs throughout the poem. Osunadre’s main focus in his poem ‘ the leader and the led is the corrupt African society. Using different animals and their qualities, Osundare illustrates the bad qualities of a leader, which is associated with selfishness, deceit, selfishness etc. The poet concludes that a good leader should possess a hybrid of qualities, being meek and brave, transparent, tough and gentle, above all, be considerate of their followers.
(ii)power struggle; Another prominent theme in the leader and the leader is the theme of power struggle. Power is a problem in Africa, leaders who have obtained power desire more power and are so clingy that they want to die ruling the country. Osundare in exposing the power struggle in African politics employs a figurative setting portraying different animals laying claim to the throne. Each ruler wants power for fame and authority, rather than for the good of the masses. In Africa, leaders have shown that power corrupts and over the years the issue of leaders clinging on to power, not wanting to let go is a common problem. Osundare successfully portrays the theme of power struggle in his poem ‘The leader and the led’.
(iii)Arrogance; This theme will discuss the theme of leadership arrogance in the leader and the led. Arrogance is another vital theme in the poem. The various leaders depicted in this poem show arrogance as they ly claim the throne. They proclaim their right to rule, claiming they are fit because of their physical strength, size or appearance. They are proud and display no form of humility and are only concerned about their selfish needs. The poem admonishes that a leader should be mindful of the follower’s right to lead, therefore displaying humility and consideration for the masses.
(i)SEXISM; Readers can find ample evidence that suggests the relationship between Alison and Jimmy, and the short-lived one between Jimmy and Helena, is rife with sexist undertones. In the first act alone, Jimmy begins an angry tirade about Alison and women in general. Jimmy’s anger and hatred is directed at women in general. The examples in the play that are taken to represent a greater sexism on Jimmy’s part are his relationships with Alison and then Helera, the most striking point of which is that after a time, Helena stands silently and emotionally passively at the ironing board on Sunday night just like Alison used to do. The similarity between Helena and Alison is that they are both from the upper class and are both religious with “establishment” church affiliations. Jimmy’s great criticism is against the satisfied, unthinking privilege given to and assumed by the upper classes who have no need to think or be intelligent, as Nigel represents, or feel, as Alison and Helena represent. When Jimmy’s treatment of Alison and Helena are seen from a 1950s perspective as representative of Jimmy’s hatred of a class division that defrauds individuals on both sides of the class divide – of their humanity, the undertones of sexism take a secondary position.
(ii)THE ANGRY YOUNG MAN; Osborne’s play was the first to explore the theme of the “Angry Young Man.” This term describes a generation of post-World War II artists and working class men who generally subscribed to leftist, sometimes anarchist, politics and social views. According to cultural critics, these young men were not a part of any organized movement but were, instead, individuals angry at a post-Victorian Britain that refused to acknowledge their social and class alienation. Anyone in the “angry young man” leaning, due to their low social class, would be “required” to dislike anyone of upper-class heritage. Jimmy Porter is often considered to be literature’s seminal example of the angry young man. Jimmy is angry at the social and political structures that he believes have kept him from achieving his dreams and aspirations. He directs this anger towards his friends and, most notably, his wife Alison.
(iii)ANGER AND HATRED; Jimmy Porter’s anger dominates the play. He operates out of a deep well of anger. His anger is directed at those he loves because they refuse to have strong feelings, at a society that did not fulfil promises of opportunity, and at those who smugly assume their places in the social and power structure and who do not care for others. This theme is pervasive, affecting the plot, the characters, and the tone of the entire play. In the first act for instance, Jimmy’s anger causes him to lash out at his wife and his business partner, Cliff, calling them boring, stupid, and unambitious, in large part because they don’t share his rage and frustration. Like many working-class men, Jimmy feels overlooked by the Establishment, shut out by polite society, and relegated to menial jobs where he is underutilized and underpaid. He also lashes out in anger because of his deeply felt helplessness. When he was ten years old he watched his idealist father dying for a year from wounds received fighting for democracy in the Spanish Civil War, his father talking for hours, “pouring out all that was left of his life to one bewildered little boy.” He says, “You see, I learnt at an early age what it was to be angry – angry and helpless. And I can never forget it.”
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