Vehi-Ciosane: Sembene Ousmane’s new vision of a new social order
Sembene Ousmane’s entire literary horizon is dominated by the desire to arouse socio- political awareness in the people. He seems to be persuaded in many of his early literary works that a revolution is necessary in order to bring about an egalitarian society. His stories depict the masses in their struggle against oppression and exploitation. In Vehi-Ciosane, however, this
position appears to have been repudiated, or at least, mellowed down.
This paper seeks to show that the former combative author ofLes Bouts de bois de Dieu, seems to have developed new insights into the nature of society. Instead of seeing all societal problems in the light of the marxist theory of the base and superstructure, he now appears to suggest a more fundamental cause of social disharmony. The paper shows that the overriding concern of the novelist in Vehi-Ciosane is the metaphysical search for truth, which is seen in the book as a central factor for social stability. This truth when eventually found and imbibed, will provide a panacea for the problems of the society.