Historical Reconstruction of Resistance in Ngugi Wa Thiongo’s Revolutionary Plays: The Trial of Dedan Kimathi and I Will Marry When I Want
Asian Journal of Language, Literature and Culture Studies,
The intense struggle of the Kenyan peasants during the British colonial and neocolonial eras had been the subject of Thiongo’s writings. His revolutionary plays such as The Trial of Dedan Kimathi (1976) and I Will Marry When I Want (1977), dealt with the freedom struggle, patriotism, internal colonization, the influence of Christianity, and the effects of decolonization as central issues that the Kenyan society faced during the colonial and neocolonial period. Though the plays were written successively, the period of dramatic events that connects the history of Kenya through anti-colonial uprisings and post-independent neo-imperialist practices justifies the selection of the above-mentioned plays for analysis. Through close reading and textual analysis of the selected plays, the paper analyzes how reconstructing the history of resistance revives the consciousness of the mass in the aftermath of independence to resisit the socio-culture oppression, such as land expropriation, exploitation, and subjugation in terms of material control, resources, Proselytization, and degeneration of cultural values by the imperialist and neo-colonial compradors. The paper also discusses Thiongo’s theatrical motifs and ideological standpoints responsible for the creation of such revolutionary plays in the 1970s. The research findings prove that Thiong’o’s ideas of unity and resistance not only decolonize the mind of grassroots but also renew their consciousness to resist the oppressive influences of colonial and neo-colonial ruling elites which continued in the aftermath of Kenyan independence.
- Kenyan peasants
- historical consciousness
- Mau Mau rebellion
- neocolonial power politics
- revolutionary ideas & resistance
How to Cite
Gikandi S. Ngugi Wa Thiong’o. Melbourne, New York: Cambridge University Press; 2009.
Kofi A. The wretched of the Earth: A survey of history, culture and literature at Africa. World Literature Written in English. 1975;15(1):45-52.
Thiong'o NW, Mugo MG. The trial of Dedan Kimathi: A critical companion. (D. K. Kumar, Ed.) Delhi: Worldview Publication; 2002.
Deurden D. Ngugi wa Thiongo interviewed by Denis Deurden, African writers talking. London: Heinemann Educational Publishers; 1972.
Lindfords B, Sander R. Ngugi wa Thiong’o speaks: interviews with the Kenyan. Centre for African studies: Universityof Cape Town; 2006.
Killam GD. The trial of Dedan Kimathi: An evalution. London: Heinemann; 1980.
Mathur A. The trial of Dedan Kimathi: A reconstructed narrative of history events. An Online Journal of Literature. April 27, 2017;1-14.
Bhuvana N. Masses as the true makers of history – Analysis of the play the trial of Dedan Mimathi. Language in India. 2010;10(2):246-250.
Thiong'o Nw, Mugo MG. The trial of Dedan Kimathi. Johanneshburg: Heinemann Publishers (Pvt) Limited; 2001.
Green M. Mau Mau oathing rituals and political ideology in Kenya: A re-analysis. Africa: Journal of the International African Institute. 1990;60(1):69-87.
Fanon F. The wretcherd of the Earth. New York: Grove Press; 2004.
Agarwalla SS. Modern literatry criticism and contemporaty literary theory. Bareilly: Prakash Book Depot; 2013.
Kumar NN. "Patriotic past and needy present": Can the native be post-colonial? Critical theory textual application. (S. Panja, Ed.) New Delhi: Worldview; 2008.
Nkrumah K. Neo-colonialism: The last stage of imperialism. New York: International Publisher Company; 1966.
Khurana S. Contemporary literature: The trial of Dedan Kimathy. School of Open Learning. 2017;1-20. Retrieved on 23/3/2020
Available:https://www.academia.edu/36309765/Contemporary Literature Study Material-1 4 The Trial of Dedan Kimathy.
Thiong'o NW. Decolonising the mind: The politics of language in African literature. London: ZImbabwe Publishing House; 1986.
Lee SH. Ngugi Wa Thiong’o’s postcolonial orality : Towards a new poetics of drama. International Area Review. 1999;2(2):153-174.
Thiongo N. I will marry when I want. South Africa, Sandton: Heinemann Publishers (Pvt) Limited; 1977.
Ogude JA. Ngugi's concept of history and the post-colonial discourses in Kenya. Canadian Journal of African Studies. 1997;31(1):86-112.
Retrieved on 15/5/2020
Ndege PO. Colonialism and its legacies in Kenya. Nairobi: Department of History, Political Science and Public; 2009.
Fanon F. Black skin, white masks. New York: Pluto Press; 2008.
Ndeda MA. The struggle for space: Minority religious identities in post-independence Kenya. The East African Review. 2009;41(4):117-195.
Ifatimehin OO. African drama in a situation of oppression: A study of Ngugi Wa Thiong'o and Micere G. Mugo's the trial of Dedan Kimathi and Athol Fugard's the island. A Journal of Theatre & Media Studies. April, 2016;1(2):1-8.
Abstract View: 244 times
PDF Download: 213 times