*WAEC GCE LITERATURE*
The tragic theme of a colonial rule is introduced at the beginning of the play when Gbanya narrates the dreams he had last night to Yoko on how the Governor humiliated him in the eyes of his people. Gbanya vows to receive and treat the Governor well in order not to incur his wrath. This shows that the setting of the play is connected to a pre-colonial era where Governors were appointed to oversee the activities of African communities. And some of these Governors, representatives of Imperial Majesty tend to overzealously exploit the people but also treat them as sub-humans or humiliate them when the people in the community err against them and that is exactly what Dr. Samuel Rowe, the Governor does to Gbanya when he finds out that the people have not stopped engaging in the war despite his stern warning to desist from such barbaric act. As a punitive measure or punishment, Gbanya the chief of Senehun is humiliated before his people. Rowe orders the soldiers to stretch Gbanya out on the ground. He also fires a shot from his pistol in the air to threaten Lavalie and Ndapi not to retaliate, Rowe takes the rice and cattle Gbanya entertained him with and zoom off.
Moreover, colonial domination also makes the chief and the people, not to have confidence in themselves because they feel and believe that the Governor, the white man is awash with superior and supreme power. That is why even when Rowe sends his Messengers to Moyamba, the people especially the chief treat him well like the Imperial Majesty herself.
Lastly, the people receive a dirty slaps on their faces when the Governor turns against them to gives out a portion of land that belongs to them to the chiefdom of Bo. He sends a message through his messenger stating that the message came from his Highness, the Governor South of Bandajama, the six villages to the north of the Tabe River now belong to the people of the chiefdom of Bo.
The play centers on class struggle in our society. Jimmy comes from a middle class (working class ) background, but has been highly educated. He went to a university but not gainfully employed. He is still stuck running to sweet stall, and he does not feel fully comfortable and hasn’t been accepted into the upper classes. He speaks and uses Jaw breaking words, read newspapers, but he sometimes has to look these words up in a dictionary.
Alison and Jimmy’s relationship is the main meeting point where class struggle unfolds. Alison is from an upper class background very different from Jimmy’s. Both portray the struggle between the two classes in military terms as the two just can’t blend. Jimmy is full of pride because of his education and this makes him alienate, separate and look down on others who are not so educated like himself, Cliff is such a character in the text.
Maya’s childhood was spent at Momma’s Store, an important gathering spot in Stamps. She observes the cycles of nature and works there, caring for plantation owners and canners during
the cotton-picking season and the slaughtering season,
respectively. Maya recalls that the Store was her favourite place
until she left Arkansas for good at thirteen.
Another symbol is a doll that arrives as a Christmas gift from
Angelou’s mother, who has abandoned her. Because the doll is
white, has blue eyes, rosy cheeks, and yellow hair. Maya
struggles with the thought that beauty equates to being white
once more. As a result, she is confronted with yet another
example of unreachable beauty. The doll, however, also
represents abandonment. Angelou had assumed her parents had
died up to that point. However, the doll serves as a bitter
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