Friday, February 15, 2019


Baroka the “Bale” of Ilunjinle, the “Lion” in the title of the play. This village chief is sixty-two years old, very proud, deceptive and cunning. His attempt to win the village belle, Sidi through deception is the central focus of the play. The Bale manipulates the other characters by feigning sexual importance. At 62 years of age, he has already sired 63 children thanks to polygamy.  
Sidi, the village belle, about eighteen years old, very pretty and coquettish, distracts the young school teacher, Lakunle, attracts a travelling photographer who wants her picture to be in a magazine and passively flirts with the Bale, unaware of the Bale’s vast experience in romance. Sidi is tricked by the Bale into making love with him at the end of the play. 
Lakunle a young “modern” stylishly dressed liberal school teacher. He is infact a conservative who pretends to be interested in Sidi or any available young woman in the village. Lakunle suppose platonic love for Sidi is no match for Bale’s cunning and experience, making Lakunle to be a poor adversary.  
Sadiku, the primary wife of the Bale. One of her principal jobs is to woo younger wives for the bale. She convinces Sidi that the young woman should marry the Bale by telling her that the Bale is old and that Sidi will have the honour of being the senior wife of a new Bale.  
3.4.5The Favorite  
The favorite, the Bale’s present young woman. She tries to please him, but she is informed by the Bale that she has no time to improve her affection because he is taking a new wife. She represents another conquest by the Bale.  
3.4.6The Surveyor  
The surveyor, an outsider who is planning to build a road through the village. He is easily bought off by the Bale, who offers gift if he will build the road in another place, thus preserving the land and the tradition of his people.  
3.5Satirical Elements in the Lion and the Jewel 
The elements of ridicule, amusement, contempt, indignation and scorn feature very prominently in Soyinka’s The Lion and Jewel which reflects to the world that the dominated culture is the traditional one besides reflecting the view of the world beliefs and condition of cultures. Soyinka uses humour, irony, wit, malicious laughter to correct the society.  
The Lion and the Jewel is a cleverly woven piece of work which satirizes Western civilization, marriage without bride price. Lakunle the modern man does not want to pay the bride price because according to him, to do so would be equivalent to buying a heifer off the market stall and reducing her to mere property. But the non-payment of the price would suggest to the society that Sidi was no virgin as seen in Sidi’s statement:  
That I was no virgin, that I was forced to sell my shame and marry you without a price, and Sidi will not make herself a cheap bowl for the village spit (7). 

Lakunle shuns all customary practices and call them as “barbaric, out-dated, rejected, denounced”. He crowns it all by telling Sadiku: 
We must be modern with the rest or live forgotten by the world, we must reject the palm wine habit and take tea, with milk and sugar (37). 

At the end Lakunle realizes his true position in the society and is sadly aware of the fact that in spite of the many Western ideas that he has accumulated, tradition still triumphs. He is confused, walks up and down and curses himself:  
And now I know I am the biggest fool that ever walked this earth. There are women to be found in every town, village in these parts and everyone a virgin. But I obey my books (61). 
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4.1Bio-date of Ola Rotimi 
Olawale Gladstone Emmanuel Rotimi, best known as Ola Rotimi was born in Sapele, in former Bendel State of Nigeria on 13th April, 1938 to and Ijaw Mother and Yoruba Father Samuel Gladstone Enitan Rotimi. 
Ola Rotim attended St. Cyprin’s school in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria from 1945 to 1949, St Jude’s school, Lagoa, from 1951 to 1952 and the Methodist Boys High School in Lagos, before travelling to the United State in 1959 to study at Boston University, where he obtained a BA in Fine Arts. In 1965, he Hazel Mae Guadreav, in 1966 he obtained an MA from Yale school of Drama, where he earned the distinction of being a Rockefeller Foundation scholar in playwriting and dramatic literature.  
Ola Rotimi was Head of Department of Creative Arts as the University of Port-Harcourt Rivers State and Lecture at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. He also served as visiting professor, playwright, and director in Germany and Italy, as well as at Deparuw University and Wabash College. Before his demise in 2000, Ola Romiti had written many plays among which are: Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again (1966) which is a comedy and a political satire. His other plays include: to Stir the God of Iron (1963), The God’s Are Not To Blame (1968), Kurunmi (1969), Holding Talks (1970), Ovonramven Nogbaisi (1971), Grip AM (1973), Invitation into Madness (1973), Akassa Youmi, (1977), if: A Tragedy of the Ruled (1979) and Hopes of the Living Death (1985).  
4.2Analysis of Ola Romiti’s Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again  
Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again is a satirical comedy play set in the post independence disillusionment. Ola Romiti writes to protest the unsatisfactory situation of the post independence. The subject matter in this play revolves round the politics ofter independence. The post independence period was corrupt with looting of treasury.  
As a satire, our Husband Has Gone Mad Again laughs at the political excesses of Nigerian Politicians. This two –act play also mocks polygamy with its attendant consequences.  
Ola Romiti writes to expose the Ideological misfits and opportunists who struck the ever accommodating political landscape of contemporary Africa. A former military major takes to politics.  His motives have far more to do with Vanity than patriotism, and his attempts to adapt to situation he hardly comprehend produce highly comic results. His predicament is complicated by the unexpected arrival of his American wife who discovers two more Marriages contracted without her knowledge and her husband besets by political problems. As would be expected from a typical Western Catholic Woman who cannot tolerate polygamy, she begins to formant trouble. This Later leads to comical cultural conflicts. This conflict later takes a different dramatic turn as Liza begins to give Sikira provoking ideas about what she calls “Women’s Lib” or women libration. 
The conflicts of the play finally come to resolution as Sikira finally joins politics after much persuasion by Liza and Mama Rashida leaves Lagos to seek better conditions in the village. These resolutions come as a result of Liza’s tact in handling those women. Lejoka Brown on the other hand is booted out of the National Liberation party because of high – handedness and he regrets leaving his lucrative Cocoa business to join politics.  
4.3Themes in Ola Romiti’s Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again  
4.3.1The Theme of Dirty Politics  
The major theme in this play is politics Ola Romiti uses his work to satirize politics as practiced in Nigeria. For instance, the politics of Sikira, an illiterate woman and the market women who assist her and the pomposity of Major Rohman Lejoka –Brown are very typical of Nigeria. All that governed politics at this period and even now is selfishness. Politics of selfishness is the bane of progress not only in Nigerian society but also in the entire African continent. The theme of politics is invested in the character of Lejoka Brown, a retired military officer who possesses every negative attribute of selfish military politicians; very arrogant and I – know –it all attitude. He does not join politics because he love to serve the people but because of what he is going to gain; money and fame. This is very true of Nigerian society where politics is governed by self interest.        
Ola Romiti is Visionary in this play. He foresees unmilitary officers coming back to power as civilians. He presents a satire on military politics and the insincerity of the military.   
4.3.2Gender Inequality  
There is also a theme of gender inequality in Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again. Lejoka Brown thinks women have no intelligence until he meets his foreign wife. In between the humour in the play, there is a subtle gender conflict. 
As a Western woman who believers that women are not in any way sub-servient to men, Liza Mobilizes her fellow wives to organize their own faction to stop the madness of their husband. What Ola Rotimi seems to be saying is that politics is not a preserve for men only. Using the mouth of Sikira, he makes his point clear: MEN AND WOMEN ARE CREATED EQUAL (6). As a medical doctor and an experienced educated lady, Liza can compete favourably with any man.  
There is no doubt that sometimes women are used as puppet in order to fulfill men’s ambition. This is exactly what Liza does not want to see or hear.  
Another theme explore in Our Husband has Gone Mad Again is Polygamy and wife inheritance. This theme is seen in Mama Rashida’marriage to Lejoka - Brown Mama Rashida is the first wife whom Lejoka –Brown has inherited from his dead elder brother. This practice of wife inheritance is the major cause of polygamy in Africa. The Irony of Polygamy and perhaps what make it continue, to exist in Africa is that even the women in some cause acquiesce to this practice.  
Mama Rashida is a good example. Rather than resist being given as a wife to a man she does not know or love, Mama Rashida does not only feel comfortable with the relationship, but also works tirelessly to maintain her rival wives.      
4.3.4Inter –Cultural Marriages  
The theme of cross cultural relationship and marriage is portrayed in Lejoka –Brown’s Marriage to Liza who is a foreigner and is educated. Their marriage shows that the duo has gone past the mentality of racial and cultural segregation. Arguably, one of the ways of uniting the world is through inter-racial marriages and this is what Ola Romiti preaches in Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again.   
4.3.5 Deceit and Betrayal  
The theme of deceit can be seen in Lejoka-Brown’s marriage to Sikira. It is not only Lejoka –Brown who seems to be deceitful here, in fact many men and women can testify of deceit of both partners when it comes to relationship. Arguably, it is an act of deception for Lejoka-Brown to take another wife without informing his foreign wife, Liza. The relationship between Lejoka –Brown and Liza could also be said to be betrayal of trust. Lejoka –Brown does not only betray the trust of his wives but also the trust of his party, the National Liberation Party. 
The belief in the Magical power of the snake which Lejoka –Brown keeps under his bed expresses the theme of superstition in Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again. It has become a popular rumour that African Politicians are fond of using some supernatural means to gain and maintain power. This is exactly the reason why Lejoka –Brown keeps the snake. However, Lejoka –Brown’s political crash before he reaches the pinnacle of his political dream puts a question mark on the assertion in the potency of some supernatural power in wining an election or achieving success generally.  

4.4Style in the Play   
4.4.1 Gun 
Although the play is on democracy, Ola Romiti deliberately uses gun to depict the militarization of Nigerian democracy. In other worlds, gun as used in the play symbolize the deployment of force to gain political power even in democracy. 
While freedom as a concept is a slogan of National Liberation party, promise as Lejoka-Brown’s good luck python is called is the symbol of restriction. Nowhere in the play do we see the snake allowed to crawl around, instead Lejoka-Brown locks it up in his room just the way he locks up his wives emotionally and socially. Lejoka – Brown promises his people freedom but restricts promise from exercising its freedom.       
Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again is written in a simple and accessible language. Every reader will enjoy his kind of language, full of images that are very relevant to our society. The manner that characters use language in the play reflects their social status. For example the way Polycarp speaks is very typical of an un-schooled servant, he calls; Major! Beg to report Sah! Di Yawo done come for house, Sah! Di Madam from America (30). And the way Ajanaku’s speaks is typical of a market woman. When Madam Ajanaku was given the privilege to speak as the Honourable president of the National Market Women’s Union she Say;    
….ehn… Agbanikaka Man say: die cow wey no get tail for nyashna God nahim de helep am drive fly commot. No more no less. Ehen ---- me I no Sabi grammar o; me and book no be one – mama – one – papa. But God helep me, I know how di worl dey turn and me too I Sabi turn am, gaanSo when I talk I know wetin I dey talk Ehn---since whey una oga marry dis my pickin ---- (66).  

It is this realistic use of language that makes the work very interesting authentic and realistic.  
4.5 Characterization on Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again  
4.5.1Rahman Taslim Lejoka-Brown  
Lejoka –Brown, a retire army major, is a good picture of political disillusionment. He is the comic hero of the play invested with greed, strictness, rigidity which pictures the political landscape of Nigeria and Africa since independence.  
He is a very autocratic Chauvinistic military man. Rahman Lejoka –Brown represents those politicians of then who could still be found now in Nigeria’s political terrain. He is gruff, grotesque and corrupt and has all negative attributes of politicians of a corrupt political regime. He is very indiscrete, arrogant and has no regard for women. No wonder the women unanimously boot him out of the office as their party leader.  Lejoka – Brown is not an intellectual but military man with antagonistic mentality who sees politics as a do – or- die affair or a venture one should engage in as a means of making money. He has no programme or manifesto for the people but only engages in politics for his selfish reason. He does not marry Sikira because he loves her but because he hopes to gain more votes from the women.  

4.5.2 Mama Rashida  
Mama Rashida is the first and senior wife of Lejoka – Brown whom he inherited from his late elder brother. She plays the role of a very traditional African wife who is submissive, patience and humble. Because of her little or no education, she does not aspire to change her status. For this reason this reason, she remains’ a flat character throughout the play. As a senior wife she acts as the mother or patron of the younger wives. She sees nothing wrong with polygamy and for this reason, she does not seem to complain in any way, she even goes a step further to receive Liza with open arms despite the fact that she is her rival wife. 
Sikira is a young amiable daughter of Madam Ajanaku, the leader of the Market Women Union, and the second wife to Lejoka – Brown. Lejoka – Brown married her to woo the votes of the market women. Because of her age, Brown could successfully make Liza believe that she is a maid. Sikira is an inquisitive and dynamic character who is ready to learn. Although she thought that the presence of her rival, Liza, would make her subservient to her, she soon begin to develop a liking for her when she begin to learn from her. Liza finally becomes a tool for her social consciousness and political socialization. As the play ends’ she outshines his husband by becoming the sole candidate of the National Liberation Party for the upcoming elections.   
Liza is a qualified medical doctor from United States, married to Lejoka – Brown in Congo; she is the architect of the family conflict in the play. After her studies in the USA, she returns to Nigeria unannounced and discovers that she is not the only woman in the life of Lejoka-Brown. As she cannot tolerate polygamy, she begins to cause trouble in order to attack polygamy and make room for herself, she begins to give Sikira provoking ideas about what she calls “women Lib” or women Liberation while she advise Mama Rashda to expand and focus more on her business. Not quite long, she is able to sweet talk Sikira into joining partisan politics and Mama Rashida leaves for the village to expand her chicken business. She now has Lejoka – Brown only for herself. Liza is complex and very intelligent. She actually loves Lejoka – Brown but she is not contented with his political obsessions. She is crafty in manner. As a typical Western woman, she is not ready to play the second fiddle in the life of Lejoka – Brown. Her education gives her an edge over her rivals. Her marriage to Lejoka –Brown in the first place shows that she has gone past the infantile attitude of racial and cultural segregation. Liza is the catalyst for women political emancipation in the play.  
4.5.5 Madam Bambina Uchenna Ajanaku 
She is the president of the National Union of Nigerian Market woman and the mother of Sikira. Although not well educated, she is no doubt an intelligent and fearless woman who will not hide her feelings when it comes to issues concerning her party. She is an Igbo woman but married to a Yoruba man in order to promote national Unity. She uses Pidgin English to express herself. Her emotion-charged speech at the emergency meeting of the party executives of National Liberation party brings about the dramatic resolution in the play in favour of the women folk.  

4.5.6Mallam Gaskiya  
He is the deputy leader of National Liberation Party. Like Osagie, he is not happy at Lejoka – Brown’s gross Misconduct in the party and for this reason; he sides with his fellow party members to make sure that Lejoka – Brown is booted out from office as the leader of the party. 
Polycarp is a domestic help in the household of Lejoka-Brown. Although an illiterate, he is very faithful to his status and his master. As a servant, he is not well developed throughout the play. Polycarp is associated with poor communication skills. He represents the common people in the society with very low level of intelligence who cannot in any way contribute to the nation building.  
4.6 Satirical Elements in Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again 
Ola Rotimi’s Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again is a social satire which ridicules the absurdities of the contemporaneous first Republic Politics in Nigeria with very marginal partisan interest.  
Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again is a political satire. It shows the follies and fables of the entire political system in Africa in general and Nigeria in particular, in a bit to correct the anomalies. It lampoons the protagonistic – Major Rahman Taslim Lejoka – Brown, a former military officer having made it big as a cocoa farmer an businessman, who ventures into politics with the intention that looks more of vanity than patriotism. His political strategy as he codes it himself is; surprise and attack” (50). Lejoka –Browns. Wealth is as a result of the cocoa plantation he inherited from his family. The scale of his wealth is shown in the statement.  
…if they put you on auction right now-you, your degrees, your coat-everything … I can buy you ten times, and stills have plenty money left to buy you all over again! But I’m pumping a lot of money into this election. Come here… (6). 

This claim is soon validated by the ease and rapidity with which he forms a political party and slips himself into the party chair. Lejoka –Brown sees politics as the only way to get wealth. He tells Okonkwo.  
… Politics is the thing now in Nigeria, mate you want to be famous? Politics. You want to chop life? No, no-you want to chop a big slice of the National Cake: Na politics… (4).  

Apart from wealth Lejoka – Brown joins politics to boast his stature to meet that of his second wife Liza. The vainglorious Major puts it succinctly thus: 
Ladies and gentlemen, I have pleasure in introducing to you this evening, the chair lady of this august occasion … she is the one and only Dr. the Honourable Mrs. Elizabeth Lejoka-Brown M. D. (Yale) Misc (aynaecology), wife of the the one and only Federal Government Minister of Agriculture and housing mister the Honourable Major Rahmen Taslim Akinjide Lejoka –Brown, ON, MHR, Esquer: (28-29).  

Lejoka –Brown realizes his stand when he was booted out of the party chair and Sikira his last wife was nominated by the party caucus as the party chair, as the party chair, as if was not enough, Mama Rashda came up with an idea to move out of the city for her chicken business. At the end of the play, Major Lejoka – Brown’s ego is thoroughly deflated; he is no longer at the centre of development but bewildered. Panicky and uncertain of what next to do, he intones gravely. “The world has come to an end” (77).  
Satire brings about change in the text as Lejoka – Brown is booted out of office as the party chair and Sikira replaced him in favour of the womenfolk. Lejoka – Brown heard that he was voted out of office, he was ready to fight, he tells Liza: 
Don’t you see? All my plans for politics are now: Chuuu! I can’t be Minister anymore. So now this is my secret …. You stand by with this rifle, and when the Crazy Government comes along one fine morning to tear down this shrine of my forefathers ….. Shoulder to shoulder we’ll fight like hungry demons! (73 -74).  

Lejoka – Brown represents those politicians in our society who fights both Government and the masses once they fail in election.  
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This project looked at how satire is uses as a corrective tool for change or a way through which societal ills are made fun of maliciously so as to be exposed and corrected these social problems or issues trigger a move for change in the society. The satirist therefore uses comic – humour as an instrument of social mobilization and reconstruction in an evocative and humorous manner. To achieve this, Wole Soyinka’s the Lion and the Jewel and Ola Rotimi’s Our Husband Has Gone Again were explored and analysis based on the satiric devices or features that characterized them as satirical texts.  
The play-rights have opened to us the social evils of the society such as; dirty politics clash and disagreement, deceit and betrayal through satire. Their style is simple and polished but explosive and original with a satiric touch that is devastatingly amusing mild and corrective as people are made to laugh at their bad behavior and at the same time make corrections. 
..................Column Break..................5.3Recommendation 
Satires is meant to be corrective as it seeks to establish proper moral attitudes towards vices, maintains standards as well as restore lost value in the society.  
Before a community is reshaped, we the reader of any work of arts must first correct ourselves from ill-practices in the society. Ill- practices can be wiped out if man will change for better, if people can stop being greedy & be contented and have the will to do good and keep to the norms of the society. If this can happen the present will give birth to a better tomorrow when violence will seize, Nigeria and the world as a whole would be a better place.      
..................Column Break..................WORK CITED  
Agada, J. Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy. Lagos:  Apex Books, 2002.  
Awachukwu, A. Literature in English. Ibadan: University Press PLC, 20011.  
Bloom, E. and Bloom. B. The satiric mode of feelingWange State Press, 1969.  
David, C. and Davy, D. Investigating English Style. Harlow: Longman Groups Ltd. 1971.  
De, Bonald. Relativism in Bonald’s Literary Doctrine. Chicago: University Press, 1994    
Mack, M. The Muse of Satire. Cambridge. University Press PLC, 1997.  
Rotimi, Ola. Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again. Ibadan: University Press PLC. 2006      
Sanders, C. The scope of satire. London Forestman Books, 1971. 
Soyinka, Wole. The Lion and the Jewel. Ibadan: University press PLC, 2006. 
Wellek, R. and Warren, A. Theory of Literature. Great Britain: Penguine Books, 1963.  
Electronic or internet source 

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