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CORRUPTION AND INJUSTICES IN FETUS IYAYI’S VIOLENCE AND CHINUA ACHEBE’S A MAN OF THE PEOPLE

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

African literature is proactive and it is used to change a bad situation like, corruption, exploitation, dehumanization, disillusionment and slavery. African writers such as Chinua Achebe and Festus Iyayi are not alone in the fight against corruption, exploitation and bad governance as African and Nigerian scholars. Moreover, corruption is a manifestation of bad governance that result to poverty and this has been identified as the bane of our society, Nigeria. All these bring about economic hardship, poverty and suffering that have sterilized the hope of many Nigerian youths. In Achebe’s A Man of the People, the author lampoons the negative effects of corruption, exploitation, deprivation, oppression and infrastructural decay. While Iyayi’s Violence, reflect on the socio-economic and political milieus that characterize the post-colonial Nigeria. He also revealed the inherent structural contradictions in Nigeria how the upper class exploits the lower class in the novel. He pictured the pains of the poor as victims of their society, touches the reader making him sympathize with these wretched of the Nigerian society inequalities, injustices, exploitation, dehumanization of the poor in the society.

Essentially, the above inherent discussion on exploitation, oppression and dehumanization of the poor masses in Nigeria paints a critical picture of the background to this study research study.

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1.2 Statement of the Problem

Both Chinua Achebe and Festus Iyayi have used their novels to suggest the need for a change corruption, violence in the socio-economic and political system in Nigeria. The two novelists have the vision of transforming Nigeria from its present state as portrayed in two novels respectively to eradicate corruption, oppression and exploitation free in Nigerian society.

They desire of Achebe and Iyayi is to see Nigeria as a place where the institutions of governance can guarantee good health, housing, food, quality education, fairness, justice and security. They want to see Nigeria as a place where there are proofs of good governance such as social and economic development as well as political stability; a country that can boast of bright opportunities for its citizens.

1.3       Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to explore the corrupt practices in Chinua Achebe’s A Man of the People and Festus Iyayi’s Violence

 

 

1.4 Significance of the study

This study will play a significant role in the lives of the Nigerian leaders over their leadership ethics. It will equip them and make them see how the poor Nigerians are faced with the object of poverty, suffering, and exploitation as a result of their selfish and corrupt rule.

The study will also serves as a reference material to researchers as well as students of English with a good knowledge on what Achebe’s A Man of the People and Iyayi’s Violence stipulated.

1.5       Objectives of the Study

The objectives of this research are:

To examine the main problems behind the corrupt practices in the fictional characters in Chinua Achebe’s A Man of the People and Festus Iyayi’s Violence.

To identify the corrupt practices played by Nigerian politicians comparing Chinua Achebe’s politicians in A Man of the People and Festus Iyayi’s Violence

To provide the prevention of corrupt practices and find a way to eliminate it completely from the Nigerian political system.

1.6       Research Methodology

The main source of this research work is a textual analysis of Chinua Achebe’s A Man of the People and Festus Iyayi’s Violence. The secondary sources are internet publication, African novels that are based on political corruption, library and articles that are related to corrupt writings.

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1.7 Scope and delimitation of the Study

The scope of this research project is delimited to Achebe’s A Man of the People and Festus Iyayi’s Violence.

1.8 Bio-Data of Chinua Achebe:

Chinua Achebe was born on the   16 November 1930. He was a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor and critic. He is a prominent Igbo writer, famous for his novels describing the effects of Western customs and values on traditional African society. He attended Government College in Umuahia in 1944. He later attended the University College of Ibadan, where he studied English, history and theology.

At the University, Achebe rejected his British name and took his indigenous name Chinua. Before joining the Nigerian Broadcasting Company in Lagos in 1954, he traveled to America and also worked for a short time as a teacher. In the 1960s he was the director of External Services in charge of the Voice of Nigeria.

During the Nigerian Civil War (1967-70) Achebe was in the Biafra government service and then taught at US and Nigerian Universities.  His later novels No Longer at Ease (1960), Arrow of God (1964), A Man of the People (1966) and Anthills of the Savannah (1987) are set in Africa and describe the struggles of the African people to free themselves from European political influences. During the Nigeria’s tumultuous political period of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Achebe became politically active.

Most of his literary works of this time address Nigeria’s internal conflict (see Nigeria, Federal Republic of: Civil War). These books include the volumes of poetry Beware, Soul Brother (1971) and Christmas in Biafra (1973), the short-story collection Girls at War (1972), and the children’s book How the Leopard Got His Claws (1972).

In 1971 Achebe helped to found the influential literary magazine Okike. His other writings include the essay collections Morning Yet on Creation Day (1975), which he later expanded under the title Hopes and Impediments (1988) and The Trouble with Nigeria (1983).

In 1990 Achebe was paralyzed from the waist down as the result of a serious car accident. Despite the setback however, he remained active and has continued writing and publishing.  In 2007 Achebe won the Man Booker International Prize for fiction and died 21 March 2013.

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1.9 Bio-Data of Festus Iyayi:

Festus Iyayi is an African literary writer. He was born on the 29th September, 1947 in Ugbegun, Esland, Edo State, Nigeria. His parents were farmers who also experienced deprivation and lived on little means.  They instilled in him a strong moral lesson about life. He started his primary school education at Annunciation Catholic College (ACC) in the old Bendel State and completed in 1966.

In 1967, he went to Government College at Ughelli and graduated in 1972 and was also a zonal winner in the Kennedy Essay Competition organized by the United State Embassy in Nigeria. He left for Ukraine in pursuit of his higher education and obtained an M.SC in industrial Economics.  He also obtained his PhD from the University of Bradford, England.

He returned to Nigeria in 1980 and took up a lecturing job in the Department of Business Administration at the University of Benin. He was also the president of the local branch of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and later, in 1986, he rose to the position of National Organization President.

He published his first novel violence in 1979, his second novel The contract was published in 1982, and the third novel, Heroes published in 1986. All these plays brought him to lime light and got him the Award of commonwealth writer’s prize. He died in a ghastly motor accident on November 12, 2013 at the age of 66 years.

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