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‘Dialecticlogy’: Gendered Language in Elechi Amadi’s Fiction, <i>The Slave</i>

AI Umoren


Dialectics is viewed by the philosophers as the art of debate used in eliciting positive ‘truths’ and also as a process of negative criticism. Literary artists believe that there is no art for art’s sake’ and that all art is  propaganda but all propaganda not art. A marriage of the philosophers’ and the literary artists’ posture which views dialectics as ‘a choice art of debate’ is the premise on which this paper examines the vexed issue of gender in Elechi Amadi’s The Slave. This paper posits that Amadi’s  dialectics which is his choice ‘art of debate’ in his fiction, The Slave uses the female gender as the artist’s ‘slave’. She is used to advance the plot as she is placed at the centre of the disorder that assails the man, the male gender. If the primary destination of the serious African artist is the master craftsmanship that has a regenerative value Ayi Kwei Armah (1984:35), the literary artistry needs deliberately to give a regenerative value to the oppressed sex on the literary tradition.
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