From Quest to Self Discovery – The Return of The Prodigal Son in Search of His Identity: A Reflectionon Etienne Goyemide's Le Silence De La Foret
Etienne Goyémidé is a novelist and playwright who remained unknown, an underdog of some sort, before the publication of his masterpiece titled Le silence de la forêt (The silence of the forest) in 1984. He cut his milk teeth, however, the following year, with the publication of his second novel titled Le dernier survivant de la caravane (The last survivor of the caravan), a book which treats as its central theme the bitter contact of the aboriginal Central Africans with the Arab world. In his first novel, which constitutes the central plank of this work, the Central African writer captures beautifully, the traditions of the pygmies of the equatorial forest in his country. It is the story of the Babingas, a despised and neglected forest tribe of the Central African Republic. Who are these people? Where are they? What do they do for a living? Why do they remain in the forest and how is their world different from the rest of us? These are some of the questions bothering our minds and which this paper attempts to answer.
Key Words: Babingas, forest tribe, African cosmology, African culture and civilisation, the identity question, self discovery.
Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the journal.
The journal content is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License [CC BY-NC-ND 4.0] http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0