Migritudinal Temper in Helon Habila's Travelers
The 21st century African socio-economic landscape is enmeshed in diverse precarious realities which are responsible for Africans' migritudinal temper as a response to anathemic situations in the continent. Africans have, therefore, become hodophile, that is, one who is fond of travelling. Employing Travelling Theory as its launch pad, this study examines the unappeasable mobility of African migrants in Habila's Travelers, by focusing attention on migration drivers fuelling hodophilic temperament in migrants’ survival mechanism put in place to survive in their newly found 'homes' abroad and narrative strategies employed in the representations of migritudinal temper. The purposively selected narrative is subject to literary criticism. It is found that post-independence disillusionment, job loss, insecurity, religious extremism, bad economy and socio-economic othering or dis/ordering are factors triggering migritudinal temper in Travelers. However, to mitigate the effect of trauma of departure, the characters engage in interracial marriage, affiliative relationship, habituation, revolutionary consciousness and language acquisition. Intertextuality, journey motif, scatological imagery, polyphonic vocality and complex plot structure are narrative strategies which significantly contribute to the representations of hodophilia in Habila's Travelers.
Keywords: Hodophilia, Migrants, Travelers, Migration drivers, Survival mechanism