HYBRIDIZATION, SOCIAL-DARWINISM, AND INSECURITY IN NIGERIA A STUDY OF SELECTED PLAYS BY SOYINKA, OSOFISAN, AND UMUKO.

HYBRIDIZATION, SOCIAL-DARWINISM, AND INSECURITY IN NIGERIA A STUDY OF SELECTED PLAYS BY SOYINKA, OSOFISAN, AND UMUKO.

ABSTRACT

This work highlights the need to identify the causes of, and tackle the overbearing violence that engulfs Nigeria as a result of socio-political and ethno-religious crises. It is an analytical study of the extent in which hybridity and the Social-Darwinist ideology has led to a collapse of law and order in most parts of Nigerian society. Tracing the Nigeria problem from the colonial era, drama as a mirror reflecting the image of a society is employed in this study to exemplify how the theories of Social-Darwinism and anarchism are connected and have enhanced the chaotic state of Nigeria. While several plays are used to buttress the polemics of this work, Wole Soyinka’s Death and the King’s Horseman, Femi Osofisan’s Aringindin and the Nightwatchmen, and Eni Jologho Umuko’s The Scent of Crude Oil provide the major dramatic paradigms for analysis. Soyinka’s Death and the King’s Horseman exemplifies the colonial challenges and the origin of hybridity which has led to the denigration of the traditional system and culture of the Nigerian society by both the Western world and Nigerians. Osofisan’s Aringindin and the Nightwatchmen evidences the final suppression of the traditional system and culture through the use of fire arms by the Nigerian politicians and military. The third play of study is Umuko’s The Scent of Crude Oil. It highlights the challenges the communities face with the spread of small arms among the youths and the consequences of lack respect for African traditional belief system. The play also goes a step further to suggest possible means of peaceful resolutions through dialogue. This work finally, recommends practical measures which could be used to quell the escalating violence in our communities and create a better and fairer Nigerian state built on equity and sense of belonging.