Tragedy in two African heroic genres: Focus on Achebe’s Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart and Kunene’s Shakain Emperor Shaka the Great, A Zulu Epic ( Vol-2,Issue-6,November - December 2017 )
Author: Bazimaziki Gabriel
Keyword: Literature, novel, epic, protagonist, fame, tragic fall, flaw, fate.
Abstract: Literature comes to readers in various forms of different shapes and conveys messages about human beings’ power and deeds that make them rank high or dwindle drastically. Among other literary forms, epics, tragedy and novels depict human heroic exploits but also tragic fall. In this study, the researcher intended to compare Achebe’s central character in his realistic novel, Things Fall Apart and Kunene’s in EmperorShaka the Great, A ZuluEpic. The study explores the tragic flaw of Okonkwo and Shaka. Based on a dual theoretical framework namely Christopher Booker‘s stages of the tragic flaw and Aristotelian theory of the tragic hero, the researcher used literary analysis as the scientific method to cement the discussion. It was found that Shaka,- the protagonist in Emperor Shaka the Great, A Zulu Epic and Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart share a number of tragic features bent with fate and tragic flaw of each. They both committed an error that made them dwindle drastically hence their abrupt death each.
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