n Shakespeare in Southern Africa - (De)stabilising the European classic : , Esiaba Irobi's

Volume 24, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1011-582X



A continuing trend in the current re-evaluation of the European canon is the adaptation of influential European plays by writers from 'postcolonies'. Varying in intent, sophistication and methodology, such adaptations are part of the core of the offerings of important African playwrights such as Wole Soyinka, Athol Fugard, Efua Sutherland, Ola Rotimi and Femi Osofisan. A basic explanation for this phenomenon is these writers' recognition of a hidden polemic in narratives, as well as their inherent malleability, which makes re-staging invaluable for both the interrogation of colonial representations and for the invention of a new human image. The endeavour is, however, paradoxical, given the multiple theoretical and ideological implications arising from the colonised or erstwhile colonised rewriting the master narratives of the colonisers or former colonisers.

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