CONCEPT AND ESSENCE OF THE SUPERNATURAL IN RELATION TO AFRICAN WORLDVIEW, A STUDY OF CLARK’S OZIDI AND SOYINKA’S DEATH AND THE KING’S HORSEMAN

CONCEPT AND ESSENCE OF THE SUPERNATURAL IN RELATION TO AFRICAN WORLDVIEW, A STUDY OF CLARK’S OZIDI AND SOYINKA’S DEATH AND THE KING’S HORSEMAN

ABSTRACT

African cosmology and worldview are sine qua non to the people of Africa, their ways of life, their ethos, aspirations, essence and their relationship with the supernatural powers. Some of the early African early dramatists have attempted to document this essential aspect of the lives of the African people.  Prominent among these dramatists are Wole Soyinka and J.P. Clark of Nigeria.  Death and the King’s Horseman is based on Yoruba worldview, that when the King dies, his horseman must go together with him.  It is based on Yoruba concept of life after death.  According to Soyinka, “life continues in its manifestation the unborn, the baby, adulthood, old age and death and at death, there is reincarnation.” (45)

J.P. Clark an Izon playwright tries to portray the Izon myth and thaumaturgy in his first of all, the Ozidi Saga, which later metamorphosed Into Ozidi play.  The issue of African metaphysics is largely documented in the play.  The objective of this dissertation is to project the essence of African cosmology and worldview as creatively portrayed by Wole Soyinka and John P. Clark in their plays, Death and the King’s Horseman and Ozidi. The dissertation is anchored on mythological theory based on K.A. Armstrong and Azouzu’s view of the theory.