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The Eagle of Womanhood: Dramatising the Strength of Nigerian Women in the Wake of Modern Experience

OC Ezenwanebe

Abstract


Man is endowed with talent, he acquires knowledge, and skills that enable him thrive in the hostile world. The female gender is imbued with such tremendous strength that enfolds as the ages passed. Where does Nigerian drama locate the strength of Igbo women as they grapple with the challenges of modern life especially those that affect their gender? This paper “The Eagle of Womanhood” explicates the dimensions of female power in the theatre of Osita Ezenwanebe’s Adaugo (2011) in order to highlight another side of female power rarely dramatized on the Nigeria stage. This is done by evaluating the choices made by the female protagonist at a critical moment in her spousal relationship and their effect on her family and other characters in the play, especially the male antagonists. The aim is to refute the obnoxious view of female indolence and rebut the claim of “woe-men” ideology which associates female accomplishments with social and filial catastrophe. “The Eagle of Womanhood” is aimed at achieving gender complementarity for sustainable development of ndi Igbo and Nigeria in general. It is Adaugo’s unflinching effort in securing the survival of her family despite all odds that is considered the eagle of her womanhood, a womanist strength that also underscores an urgent need for change in the Igbo’s gendered conceptualization of social roles in contemporary world.

Keywords: gender, Nigerian drama, the Igbos, Patriarchy, Feminism,
African Womanism




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