Art and Literature

Summary, Characters, and Full Analysis of the Lion and the Jewel pdf


In this blog post, we shall analyse Summary, Characters, and Full Analysis of the Lion and the Jewel

Background of the Playwright

Wole Soyinka is a Professor of English. He is a “master playwright”. Besides, he is a social critic. He was born in Abeokuta in 1934. He had a secondary school education at Government College, Ibadan. Soyinka attended both the University of Ibadan and Leeds University, Britain, for university education.

Wole Soyinka is Africa’s greatest playwright, apart from being a talented poet and novelist. The message of his literary works are very unique. Again, his style of writing are greatly special. And these have been to the interests of literary scholars all over the world. All these qualities in Soyinka earned him he Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986. Soyinka is the first African to win this famous World Literature Prize.

Almost all Soyinka’s plays are satires. The satires often spell out the fact that Africa’s cultural, human and environmental developments are caused by African elites, African rulers, as well as the ordinary African citizens. So, Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel is a masterly satire. In the play, Soyinka satirizes African leaders’ attitude of neglect of the basic needs of the common man. The play also satirizes young African elites who always look down on African culture. Youths that often allow exuberant traits to sink their stars are satirized too. The Lion And The Jewel satirizes the class of African leaders known for conspiracy attitude, against youth’s growth.

What is the story of the Lion and the Jewel?

The story-line of Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel is a satire. It is a comic satire. Its story-line dramatises how the various classes of African citizens are ruining the courses of Africa’s development. The concerned classes of Africans and how they perpetrate Africa’s ruin will be duly highlighted and illustrated, effectively, in due course.

Physical Settings of the Lion and the Jewel

Physically, Wole Soyinka set The Lion And The Jewel in a Yoruba village called Ilujinle.

  • The village was close to big cities and towns like Lagos, Ibadan, Badagary…
  • The play was set in the early 20th century, when Europeans were building Railway tracks and stations in the interior parts of the colony of Nigeria, to transport farm produce to the sea-port, in Lagos.
  • Ilujinle was a small village with one small village-school, which had just one teacher.
  • At the time of the play’s setting modern means of transport like the motor car and the motor-cycle had just been seen once, at llujinle.
  • Despite, the people of llujinle still regarded the motor-cycle as an iron-horse.
  • That time too, they had not known about the camera for taking photographs, until the stranger from “outside world” came to snap Sidi’s pictures, possibly for nfodelling.
  • To the people of llujinle, their village was the only place under the sun (i.e. inside world).
  • llujinle village had no roads, but foot-paths.
  • Most of the foot-paths linked up to the village centre, under the big odan tree.
  • The village school was built at the village centre. The place was also the spot for Ilujinle night market.
  • So, the village centre under the big odan tree served as business, romance and gossip centre. It was also the public entertainment venue.

Remember that Lakunle and Sidi always talked about their love there. It was there that Sadiku came to gossip to Sidi that Baroka’s manhood had become impotent. Also, it was there that Sidi started her wedding procession to Baroka’s Palace.

Social Settings of the lion and the Jewel

  • Socially, llujinle was a place practising well-defined culture, even though it was a small village.
  • For instance, a man must undertake introduction in order to marry a girl, at llujinle village.
  • This is what Lakunle described as the asking, in the “Night Part” of the play.
  • Also, a man must undertake engagement. This is what Sidi called: pay bride-price on my head throughout all her corner talks with Lakunle.
  • A matured girl for marriage must be a virgin.
  • This is the reason seriously emphasised by Sidi to Lakunle that people will regard her as a disvirgined girl, if she agrees to marry Lakunle without bride-price.
  • The parents of the bride always pay marriage dowry(i.e. the first belongings which a bride takes to her husband’s house) to the family of their daughter’s husband, under the marriage customs practised at llujinle.

Sidi pointed this out while talking to Baroka to advise her. She had asked the question that if Baroka were her father, would he pay dowry to a greedy old man that proposed marriage to her.

  • Also, a new Bale of llujinle must inherit the last wife of the dead Bale as his first wife.
  • Beside marriage culture, the people of llujinle practised the custom of showing respect for the elderly.
  • The people of llujinle were farmers and traders. For instance, they had a night market for transacting business.
  • The people of llujinle lived under hygienic environment. The village had public latrines.

Remember, the picture of Baroka appeared close to the latrine in the photo magazine presented to Sidi and Baroka by “the stranger from the outside world”.

  • Socially too, the people of llujinle were recreational.

Remember that Baroka often engages in wrestling bouts in order to recreate himself.

  • The people of llujinle were communal in nature.

A buttress to this is how they largely turn out to join Sidi’s wedding procession to Bale Baroka’s palace.

  • The people of llujinle were ruled authoritatively by their Bale.

A buttress to this is the double-standard marriage law in practice at Ilujinle. For instance, an ordinary man cannot marry without paying the bride-price. But the Bale can seize a virgined girl and make her a concubine, at will.

Plot of Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel

The story-line of The Lion And The Jewel is presented in two subplots. And like ail Soyinka’s plays, the double sub-plots are paralleled. One sub-plot involves Teacher Lakunle and Sidi (the belle of llujinle Village). The other involves Bale Baroka, Sadiku (Baroka’s first wife) and Sidi.

The first sub-plot is laid in the “Morning Part”. Here, Sidi is the most beautiful girl (i.e. belle) in llujinle Village. Also, Teacher Lakunle is the most educated fellow around at llujinle. This makes Lakunle to put a wrong view in his head that he deserves to marry Sidi without any attached string. So, Teacher Lakunle proposes his marriage wish to Sidi. Truly, Sidi agrees. But Lakunle has to observe the marriage customs in practice at llujinle. Importantly, she firmly emphasises that Lakunle must pay bride-price to her parents before they can marry.

However, Teacher Lakunle does not want to pay any bride-price. Before Sidi’s face, he declares that the custom is very bad. To him, the people of llujinle are backward for practising such a custom. From here, Lakunle tries to spin Sidi’s head. He says Sidi deserves to live a civilized life in view of her beauty. Lakunle then promises to provide Sidi with many conveniences. He says Sidi will be using pounding machine for pounding, gas-cooker for cooking, grating machine for grinding pepper and pipe-borne water for bathing, washing and cooking… He also promises to be taking Sidi to night clubs, to dance like Europeans, on weekends. Lakunle had hoped to make Sidi to believe that payment of bride-price is an act of buying a wife, to become a slave to the husband. Sidi is not in anyway convinced by Lakunle’s promises. Her conclusion is that Lakunle must pay bride-price on her, in order to many her.

Lakunle continues to worry Sidi with stories about civilized life. But Sidi maintains her stand on bride-price payment to her parent, for any marriage to take place. At this juncture, three girls, who are Sidi’s friends lead a crowd to the stage. They come to announce the arrival of the stranger from the outside world.” The man has arrived with a magazine containing the pictures he took of sidi, Baroka and the landscape of llujinle Village, on his first trip. Sidi is again informed that Baroka is still looking at the magazine. The girls describe Sidi’s picture in the magazine as very beautiful. Each is larger than the single small picture of Baroka.

Sidi is very joyful for the information. She quickly considers herself as the most important person at llujinle. What follows? Sidi declares that she no longer wishes to marry Lakunle. Lakunle tries to beg her. And Sidi ignores Lakunle’s pleas. She then suggests to her friends that they should have a mime dance called “The lost Traveller”. Sidi later forces Lakunle to take part in the dance.

The dance is twice staged. The first one is happily done by Lakunle in the company of the four girls selected by Sidi . The four girls mime the movement of the four wheels of a motor-car tyres. And Lakunle acts as the imaginary car owner and driver. At a point near the bush, Lakunle stops the car to come out with the grace of a car-owner. He plans to take photographs. Suddenly he hears a scream from a girl, in the bush. He follows the direction. It is like the girl is naked. As Lakunle hurries to snap the girl’s nude picture, he finds himself flat on ground. The next thing that happened is that he is arrested and pushed to the Village Centre under the odan tree, for Baroka’s trial. Baroka therefore orders a repeat performance of the dance. As Lakunle refuses, Baroka orders his body-guards to beat him up. He is accused as a thief and rapist who plans to dishonour the most beautiful girl of llujinle Village.

Afterwards, Lakunle begins to perform the dance for the second time.
Amidst the performance, Lakunle is seized and forced to prostrate to Baroka. Then, Baroka sympathizes with him. And he is allowed to take all the photograph he desires. Sidi is happy for the performance put up by Lakunle. But Lakunle is not happy. He just leaves the Village Centre in annoyance. Later, Baroka expresses his satisfaction and declares his wish to marry a new wife.

The second sub-plot covers all the scences of the “Noon Part” and the first two scenes of the “Night Part”. Here, Baroka has sent Sadiku his oldest wife to go and woo Sidi for him, as a new wife. When Sadiku really meets Sidi at the Village Centre and gives Baroka’s message, Sidi refuses. Consequently, Sadiku returns to Baroka to feed him back. At first, Baroka is angry. Later, he arrives at a trick. He plans with Sadiku to go and meet Sidi. She is to inform Sidi that Baroka has suddenly become sexually impotent. So, Sidi can go to Baroka’s palace to mock him. As feeble-minded as she is, Sidi too believes Sadiku. And she goes to mock Baroka, in his palace.

At the palace, Baroka first pretends that Sidi is an unwanted visitor. Even, he has so arranged his palace that none of his many wives and servants are around in the palace. Sidi just finds Baroka engaging a wrestler. Foolishly, Sidi is carried away by the wrestling bout. So, she does not suspect Baroka’s trick. She stays until the wrestling match ends. As Baroka wins, he automatically becomes an hero, before Sidi. Consequently, Baroka cashes-in-on Sidi’s simple mind and spins her head. Sidi is eventually trapped and ended up on Baroka’s bed. In the process, her virginity is lost.

The two sub-plots unite in the third scene of “Night Part”. Sidi has childishly lost her virginity. And she is no longer qualified to marry with payment of bride-price to her parents. Lakunle offers to marry her without virginity and without bride-price payment. Sidi rejects and opts to become married to Baroka, for a life of a concubine.

Summary of the part in The Lion and the Jewel

Morning part Summary in The Lion and The Jewel

This part called “Morning” opens with Sidi and Lakunle near the Village School building. Close to the Village Centre, Sidi carries a pail of water on her head. Lakunle removes the pail off Sidi’s head and repeats his advice to her not to carry load on the head. Instead of using tactics of romance to convince Sidi on the bad effect of load -carrying on the head, Lakunle just continues to abuse Sidi. He says Sidi is as stubborn as an illiterate goat.

Lakunle’s statement is a piece of invective. It is so, because Sidi is truly an illiterate. Here, Lakunle is shown as a tactless and unromantic character.

Next, Lakunle takes on Sidi, on the issue of dressing. He accuses Sidi of exposing the curves of her breast, below the fold of the wrapped Here, Lakunle is objecting that Sidi’s breast should not be for the public to see. He totally refuses to take Sidi’s explanations that she has tried her best to cover her chest and breasts. Lakunle insists that Sidi’s dressing is like going about nakedly. As such, Sidi has been ignorantly giving excuse to the people of llujinle to gossip at Sidi, as an immodest girl.

Lakunle is a jealous and over-critical character.

Sidi gets annoyed. She then describes Lakunle as a mad-man. Lakunle again replies by describing Sidi and everybody at llujinle Village as uncivilized.

Here, Lakunle is hown as a heady and dis-respecfful character.

Sidi’s annoyance increases. She attempts to beat up Lakunle. Lakunle stops her, saying Sidi wants to attempt what her small brain cannot do. This makes Sidi again to agitate that Lakunle is not wiser than her. She then asks for her pail and warns Lakunle never to talk to her again.

The way Lakunle relegates Sidi above illustrates him as a male chauvinist. And the way Sidi argues reasonably for herself illustrates her as a no-nonsense character.

At this juncture, Lakunle pleads with Sidi not to be angry with him. He swears that he does not mean to say Sidi’s brain is small. But he is referring to the females generally. He supports himself with the analogy that the female is called the weaker sex, because of her small brain. Sidi disagrees with Lakunle that the female is not weak. She illustrates herself with how the female labours so hard to cook, farm and nurse babies.

Sidi is an analytical character.

Lakunle then cashes-in-on Sidi’s analyses and assures that machines will soon be available to take care of her cooking. This looks impossibe to Sidi and she accuses Lakunle of planning to turn the world up-side down. Confidently, Lakunle vows to turn the whole of llujinle inside out. He swears to deal with Baroka the Bale of llujinle Village.

Lakunle’s vow noted above illustrates him as a goof and suicidal character This is because it is a great wonder for "a single ordinary man" to claim the capacity to deal with a ruler of a people!

By now, Sidi asks Lakunle how he comes about his ideas of transforming things! He replies Sidi that the transformations he talks about have already taken place in Lagos, Badagry and other closer towns to llujinle. Sidi then tells Lakunle to leave llujinle for any of the transformed towns. She thereby asks Lakunle to release her pail. This time, Lakunle asks Sidi to swear to marry him. Sidi swears Yes. Lakunle then reads a romantic poem to abuse Sidi as a bush-girl. Using the proverb of the snail that changes its base on discovering harmful danger, Sidi asks Lakunle to leave Ilujinle and her bushy Villagers, to where people are not bushy.

Sidi's analogy illustrates the device of aphorism. The aphorism confirms Sidi as an analytical character.

Once more, Lakunle tries to praise Sidi with some romantic words and persuades her to promise to marry him. Sidi again promises to marry him, anytime he is ready to pay bride-price to her parents. She explains to Lakunle that she will be taken for a dis-virgined girl, if she marries without a bride-price. Lakunle just tells Sidi off that the custom of payment of marriage bride-price is bad.

Sidi's insistence on payment of bride-price shows her as a firm character. Lakunle's condemnation of the custom illustrates him as an hermit.

Still, Lakunle does not try another method to convince Sidi. He is armed with the explanation that bride-price payment is like buying a wife, as a slave. He then promises to make Sidi a civilized wife, who will always dress elegantly. He promises to teach Sidi many European dance forms. Sidi will also be attending night-clubs on weekends. He then tries to kiss Sidi. But Sidi dodges. Lakunle again gets annoyed and calls Sidi a bush-girl. Sidi does not take the incident lightly. She too calls Lakunle a mad-man. She even blames the people of llujinle for allowing Lakunle to be their children’s teacher.

Sidi has not finished dealing with Lakunle, when her three friends lead a crowd of villagers to the stage. The crowd appear to have been searching for Sidi to inform her of the arrival of “the man from the outside world” The man had taken her photograph, when he first came to llujinle.

The man from the outside world, must have been a Lagos photo journalist.

The girls further inform Sidi that the photo journalist rode on a motorcycle. They describe it as an iron-horse with two feet. The journalist is then reported to have brought a magazine containing Sidi’s picture on its front cover and centre-spread. However, the magazine contains a small size picture of Baroka which is placed near the Village latrine.

 The emphasis on the location of Baroka's picture illustrates the use of the device of high burlesque. The burlesque indicates that Sidi has become more important than the Bale.

With these pieces of information, Sidi proudly takes herself as the most important person in llujinle. She then informs Lakunle that she no longer wishes to marry an ordinary teacher, who cannot afford to pay marriage bride-price.

For quickly considering herself as the most important person at llujinle because of her beauty, Sidi is illustrated as an irrational character.

Under the aura of her new personality, Sidi tells the crowd that she wants them to stage the mime-dance called “The Lost Traveller”. Again, Sidi orders Lakunle to take part in the dance. The dance represents a mime of the first time the photo journalist (i.e the man from the outside world) came to llujinle, in a motor car.

The dance of "The Lost Traveler is a flashback to the suffering encountered by the Lagos photo-journalist, on his first arrival at Ilujinle. Then, it appeared that the journalist did not first meet with the Bale of Ilujinle before conducting his business. He just went round taking Photographs. As he was busy with his job, he heard a girl's scream in the bush. He followed the direction of the scream. Close by, the journalist beheld a girl, who possibly was naked . So, he prepared his camera to snap a nude picture of the girl. The girl again screamed harder. Possibly, her scream attracted some people who over-powered him. He was taken to the Bale, who must have accused him as a thief and rapist. And he must have been disgraced, before he was allowed to conduct his business. Again, the journalist must have been given such a chance, on the condition that he must come back to present complimentary copies of his magazine to the Bale of Ilujinle. Since the journalist's departure his suffering must have been turned into a dance-mime called "The Lost Traveller" by Ilujinle Villagers.

Happily, Lakunle leads the other four characters and “The Lost Traveller Dance” is mimed. The four girls mime the movement of the four tyres of a motor car. Lakunle acts as the driver of the car, car owner, and the stranger. At a stage, the mime-car stops and Lakunle alights graciously. He looks round graciously too. Possibly he remembers his pupils at school, Lakunle then refuses to continue with the dance. He tries to leave. But Bale Baroka appears with a small crowd of people. As Baroka sits down and everybody greets him either by prostrating or kneeling down, Lakunle only bows. He then tries to leave the stage. But Baroka orders him to go on with the mime dance.

Lakunle is illustrated as a proud and contemptuous character, in the way he refuses to prostrate to Baroka.

Lakunle continues with the dance. Immediately, Baroka orders his bodyguards to teach him a lesson. As the mime gets to the stage, the lost traveller wanted to take the nude photograph of the girl screaming in the bush; Lakunle is seized. He is made to prostrate before Bale Baroka. The Bale then accuses him of an attempt to rape the most beautiful girl in the Village.

This is a flashback to the arrest of the lost traveller, as he was about take the screaming girls’ nude photograph. The flashback is a trick of Baroka to discredit Lakunle,before his villagers. Consequently, Sidi whom Baroka plans to make his next concubine will be free from the influence of Lakunle.

Truly, the villagers get angry against Lakunle as soon as Baroka accuses him as a rapist. They try to beat him up, until he finds his way out of the gathering to his house. At this point, only Baroka and his wrestler are left on the stage. From there, he decides to make Sidi his next concubine.

Baroka is illustrated as a lustful character by the way he destroys a virgin among his subjects every five months.

Noon part Summary in The Lion and The Jewel

Sadiku the first wife of Baroka is introduced in this part. She has a message for Sidi from Baroka. On meeting Sidi in the company of Lakunle around the market, Sadiku delivers the message that Baroka wants to marry her. Lakunle is mad with anger on hearing this. But Sidi calms him down. Lakunle then begins to call Sidi some good female names from the Bible. Sidi rejects the names and maintains that she is Sidi the beautiful and lovely jewel, according to the description of the Lagos photo journalist.

At this juncture, Sadiku chips in to ask Sidi to marry Baroka. Sidi replies no. She says Sadiku cannot trick her for Baroka.

The way Sadiku is always happy in trapping-down young virgins of Ilujinle into useless marriage to Baroka illustrates her as a wicked and sadistic character.

As Sadiku’s first approach fails, she tries to spin Sidi’s head. She describes to her all the enjoyments in the position of the last wife of the Bale. For instance, the last wife is the Bale’s favourite. As the favourite wife sleeps in the same house with the Bale, so will it be for Sidi. Again, Sadiku states that the favourite wife at Bale’s death has the opportunity to become the first wife of a new Bale. She even states that she has been Baroka’s first wife for the past 41 years.

The culture of wife inheritance is practised at Ilujinle.

Sidi declines to marry Baroka. She tells off Sadiku that Baroka is a sheer opportunist who wants to ruin her life and particularly destroy her fame. Remember, Sidi has just become famous through the publication of her photograph by a Lagos photo journalist. Sidi rests her case on the analogy that Baroka should have proposed to her before that time, if he is truly sincere to marry her.

Sidi's argument that Baroka wants to ruin her illustrates her as a thoughtful character. The argument also illustrates the device of authoral intrusion. With the intrusion, Soyinka is categorical that there is no lasting marriage happiness that a 62-year-old man can give an 18-year old bride. Therefore, a theme of the play is shown: African leaders' selfishness is preventing African youths' growth.

Sadiku is surprised at the analytical way with which Sidi rejects Baroka’s marriage proposal to her. Sadiku then accuses Lakunle as the brain behind Sidi’s action. So, she attempts to beat him up. Sidi still treats Sadiku to further surprises. She sends her back to tell Baroka that he is too old for her. Well, Sadiku is short of words. She just concludes that something is wrong with Sidi in the head. As she wants to return home, she thinks of another trick and turns back to Sidi. This time, she briefs Sidi that Baroka has invited her to a supper feast that night; in case Sidi rejects Baroka’s marriage proposal.

Sadiku is a clever trickster.

However, Sidi too turns down the invitation, saying she is matured enough to conceive Baroka’s act of deception in invitation of young girls to supper. Sadiku does not convince Sidi. And Lakunle too supports Sidi’s opinion that Baroka is called a fox because of such cunny acts and deception.

Lakunle's description of Baroka as a fox is a piece of symbolism. Baroka is illustrated as a deceitful character with symbolism.

Furthermore, Lakunle gives a flashback of how Baroka bungled the plan to build Railway line through llujinle. He emphasises that Baroka used tricks to bribe the European surveyor that came to mark the site of the railway tracks. Baroka is said to have offered the surveyors presents of money, fowls, goats and drinks. By Lakunle’s conclusion, Baroka stopped the railway project for llujinle, because the civilisation to come with it will expose his selfishness.

This flashback is the device with which Soyinka satirizes African Leader's corrupt attitude. Hence, the flashback illustrates the theme that: African leaders often neglect their subjects' basic needs for selfish reasons.

The scene has shifted to Baroka’s room. Baroka is relaxing with his latestfavourite wife. The woman is engaged in pulling dirty hairs off Baroka’s arm-pit. At first, Bardka has been commending the Favourite. Suddenly, he announces his wish to take a new wife that evening. He does not even consider the feeling of the Favourite. As soon as Sadiku returns from the trip to Sidi, Baroka sends away the Favourite from the room, without any regard.

First, Baroka is illustrated as a wicked character judging by the way he breaks women's heart, at will. Two, he is a male chauvinist judging by the way he treats women with disregard.

Sadiku reports back that Sidi firmly refuses Baroka’s marriage proposal. Baroka disregards the firm refusal as the usual ritual for a woman that will fall in love.

This conclusion illustrates Baroka as a lusty character.

Furthermore, Sadiku reports to Baroka that Sidi described him as an old man. He gets annoyed. He then begins to list all energetic activities he has recently done. Baroka recalls how he recently beat every llujinle man in weight lifting of logs of wood. He claims he often hunts in the company of powerful wild animal hunters. He mentions his recent climbing exercise, as well as how he always tires out any of his wives, during sexual intercourse.

All the above notes illustrate Baroka as a boastful character.

Next, Baroka looks at both his, and Sidi’s pictures to confirm the correctness of Sidi’s description of him as an old mån. He then tells Sadiku that he would have been satisfied to have become old, if Sidi had agreed to marry him, and later he failed to satisfy her sexually.

Baroka's lament here illustrates him as a greedy character.

Carefully; Baroka continues to lament that a kid such as Sidi is mocking his sexual ability. Sadiku in turn continues to sympathize with him. Baroka comes up with a cunny solution, on how to trap Sidi. The solution is that Sadiku should go and brief Sidi that he has become sexually impotent. As such, Sidi might be tempted to come and make jests of him. Thereby, she will not leave Baroka’s chamber with her virginity

This solution illustrates Baroka as a master trickster.

Night part Summary in The Lion and The Jewel

The first scene of this “Night Part” of The Lion And The Jewel takes place at the Village Centre, near the school room. Sadiku enters the stage with a carved naked image of Baroka. She then starts to dance round it, like a mad fellow. As she dances, she continues to shout that Baroka has become a sexually impotent man, due to his greed and lust for women. She even gives herself glory for rendering Okiki, the father of Baroka impotent as the then favourite wife.

The above revelation of Sadiku shows that Baroka inherited Sadiku as wife after the death of Okiki - his fathen As such, wife inheritance is a part of marriage customs at llujinle.

Shortly, Sadiku’s mockery making attracts Sidi from the school room. As Sidi comes nearer her, Sadiku congratulates Sidi that the females of llujinle have won a war. She stops and continues her moékery dance, until Sidi stops her and forces her to make a clear sense of what happened. In whispers, Sadiku says Baroka has become impotent. Sidi then asks why Baroka should propose marriage to her, as an impotent man. Again, Sadiku deceptively answers Sidi in whispers. And as if Sadiku be-witches her, Sidi simply agrees with Sadiku that Baroka has truly become impotent.

With the simple mind with which Sidi believes Sadiku, Sidi is illustrated as a feeble-minded character. For the troubles taken by Sadiku to deceive Sidi, Sadiku is a trickster like Baroka.

Lakunle joins them. On seeing Lakunle, Sadiku tries to scare him away, so as not to influence Sidi. But Lakunle is not afraid. He even vows to deal with Sadiku like a man, if she dares him. Sadiku cashes-in-on how Lakunle declares himself as a man to repeat the message that Baroka is no longer a man. By now Sidi has made up her mind to go and mock Baroka directly, inside his palace. Lakunle tries to persuade Sidi from going to Baroka’s place. However, he too does not suspect the trick in the ånnouncement of Baroka’s sudden sexual impotence. So, he is unable to offer a persuasive warning.

N.B. One, Sidi's decision is silly. So she is illustrated as a foolish and vainglorious character. Two, Lakunle too is illustrated as an unexposed and feeble-minded character. This is because of his inability to suspect that Sadiku wants to trap Sidi into Baroka's bed With the way Sidi cheaply falls for Sadiku's trick, a theme of the play is illustrated thus: habit of vainglory is a ready-made path to destruction. Two, the feeble-mindedness of both Sidi and Lakunle illustrates the theme that: Youthful exuberance is not enough to enforce a social change.

Only Lakunle and Sadiku are left together, as Sidi rushes to Baroka’s palace. Lakunle vows to put Sadiku into trouble, if Baroka should maltreat Sidi. But Sadiku just continues to mock Lakunle. First, she said Sidi is already enjoying supper with Baroka. Again, she describes Lakunle as a poor fellow who could not afford payment of marriage bride-price. She even advises Lakunle to engage in farming to make money for a marriage bride-price. Finally, Sadiku teases Lakunle as a practical reformer.

Lakunle jumps at Sadiku’s compliment. He then begins to list all the transformations he will bring about at llujinle. He vows to cancel bride-price. The law of one man, one wife shall prevail. A wife will be equal to the husband. Roads shall be built and cars will be provided forru/ers. Meta/ cooking utensil shall replace clay ones. Printing of newspaper sha// be introduced. People will know how to make cocktail parties and dance European dances. Conclusively, he vows to introduce adult literacy education and the 70 yearold Sadiku will be the first pupil.

Here, Lakunle is illustrated as a confused and vainglorious character.

The second scene of the “Night Part” of The Lion And The Jewel takes place inside Baroka’s palace. Sidi arrives there, when Baroka is having a wrestling contest. The home is empty.

Baroka must have pre-arranged the situation, in order to prevent Sidi from suspecting his trick to trap her.

On her entry, when Sidi greets, Baroka pretends as if she is an unwanted visitor. He accuses her of intruding into his privacy. Foolishly, Sidi again waits after the challenge, under the pretext of watching the wrestling competition going on, between Baroka and a wrestler. Later, Sidi announces that she has come to honour Baroka’s invitation. She pleads with him to disregard her childish no-answer, previously sent through Sadiku. Here, Baroka lies that Sadiku has not delivered any message to him.

Baroka is illustrated as a pretender and clever character.

Next, Sidi attempts to remind Baroka of his marriage proposal. But she stops mid-way, as Baroka seems not to comprehend her mind-set. Later, Sidi gets annoyed by Baroka’s comment that his bedroom is not a place to be entered unannounced. Instead of living the palace at this stage she does not Impulsively, she waits. She determines to talk on with Baroka, until she will have the opportunity to mock him for his sudden sexual impotence.

Sidi is a naive character.

At last, Baroka’s mood of anger has calmed down and Sidi is no longer afraid. Baroka has even asked her to sit down to watch his wrestling exercise. By the by, Sidi and Baroka begin to make conversation in proverbs as the wrestling goes on. At a point, Baroka steers their conversation to the subject of changing wives and wrestlers.

Baroka is a tactical character and goal-getter.

When Sidi asks if Baroka is already planning to change either a wife or wrestler, he replies with a proverb. The proverb can be intepreted as Yes. This annoys Sidi and she tries to withdraw away. Childishly, she still returns to confront Baroka in riddles. Here, Sidi requests to seek Baroka’s advice as a father, on how to go about a marriage proposal from a greedy old man, who already has many wives. Sidi then asks if Baroka will pay dowry to the man and bless her marriage to him, if he were his father.

Under llujinle marriage customs, the parents of the bride usually pay dowry to their daughter's would-be-husband. Dowry implies the first belongings which the bride will take to her husband's house at wedding.

To Sidi’s point of riddle, Baroka does not give a straight forward answer. He only prods Sidi with questions to know if the man is old, miserly and selfish. Sidi replies yes. She also indicates that the man never gives out, except he is sure to get some returns over what he gives out. Baroka becomes angry and throws his wrestling partner. Sidi becomes excited as Baroka wins his opponent.

Baroka displays anger because he understands that he is the man whom Sidi refers to using the innuendo in her riddle. So, Sidi's riddle illustrates the use of the device of innuendo. Again, Baroka's anger because of the innuendo illustrates him as an egocentric character Sidi's unnecessary excitement at the end of the wrestling confirms her feeble-mindedness.

Baroka is still painful about Sidi’s riddle. So, he suggests that the man’s enemies might be saying all those bad things against him. On noticing that Sidi is not attentive, Baroka again asks about the man in her riddle. He asks if the man is brave, wise and sexually potent by his wives’ assesment. Sidi replies that the man is brave, because his room is full of decorations of skins of wild animals. She also says the man is as cunny as a fox, because he is fond of eating newly-hatched chickens. And she further replies that the man can no longer be considered a sexually potent fellow, because it is over two years a naming ceremony has last been celebrated in his house. Baroka outright stops the riddles and jokes exercise. He charges that Sadiku has revealed his secret to Sidi. But Sidi denies. Baroka then condemns Sadiku as a bad woman. He later shouts at Sidi, with the vow to deal with any woman caught talking carelessly about him.

Baroka's condemnation of Sadiku is fake. Everybody except Sidi knows that Sadiku and Baroka together planned the trick already working on Sidi. So, the situation illustrates the device of dramatic irony. Baroka is only putting fearin Sidi's mind by shouting at her. So, he is illustrated as an artful schemer.

Meanwhile, Baroka has sat on the bed after sending the defeated wrestler to fetch palmwine into the room. Then he tries to prod Sidi more to make.her state, if she knows why he has invited her. Sidi replies that Sadiku told her nothing. Baroka too says he has not asked Sadiku to say anything. Again, Baroka asks if Sadiku told some stories to Sidi. Sidi replies no, except the message Sadiku delivered to her that Baroka begs for her presence for supper, at the palace.

Baroka feels be-littled that he is begging to see Sidi. He therefore condemns Sadiku as a busy-body who goes about with careless talks which always make strangers to troop into his palace bedroom. Sidi childishly sympathises with Baroka. Quickly, Baroka expresses the hope that Sidi is not a busy body. One more, Baroka spins Sidi’s head by complimenting her that he does not know that she is clever and wise. He then asks Sidi to draw nearer the bed. By the by, Baroka brings out the photo magazine and an envelope with a stamp. He later points to Sidi to behold a machine in the corner of the room. Baroka then tells Sidi that the machine is for printing postage stamps.

Baroka is a criminal for printing government stamps by himself.

At long last, Baroka tricks Sidi to move nearer him as he tests the machine for her to see. In a romance way, Baroka promises to print a stamp with Sidi’s picture for mail-delivery round the country. By now, Sidi has sat down on Baroka’s bed, while he is still standing in the middle of the room. He turns and faces Sidi directly and addresses her on how he will improve the welfare of llujinle, as Lakunle always emphasises.

Baroka's linkage of his idea to Lakunle's advocacy is a piece of humour. Baroka appears to be indirectly mocking that Sidi has already fallen into his trap.

The wrestler mistakenly drops his cup on hearing Baroka’s welfare plan for llujinle. Baroka quickly sends him out. Thereafter, Baroka joins Sidi on the bed. He then begins to talk of development to take over llujinle into Sidi’s ears. But Sidi is already confused. Notwithstanding, Baroka continues to spin Sidi’s head with proverbially romantic words. In her confusion, Sidi is only responding that Baroka is sounding like Lakunle to her. That moment, Baroka makes Sidi to rea4ise that she has to prepare for love making between the two of them. That way, his old and wise blood can flow into her new and youthful body.

The third and final scene of the “Night Part” of The Lion And The Jewel takes place at the Village Centre. Lakunle is restless. He has begun to be contemplating that Sidi might have been killed by Baroka. Quickly, he decides to go to Baroka’s palace to rescue Sidi.

Lakunle is illustrated here as b nincompoop. He is expected to have run after Sidi and prevented her from going to meet Baroka, in the first instance.

Before Lakunle could dash off towards Baroka’s palace for the rescue, a group of dancers and drummers called “mummers” have taken the stage. So, Lakunle waits as the mummers begin to play Sadiku tries to make Lakunle spend money for them. Lakunle does not until Sadiku picks a coin from his pocket to give to the mummers. The mummers make songs from Baroka’s sexual impotence and complement it, with a mime dance of somebody who was once sexually potent, but no longer.

The mimmers leave the stage. Then Lakunle starts to pray. He wishes Sadiku should be beaten up by Baroka for giving out the secret of Baroka’s sexual impotence. Just then, Sidi bursts unto the stage and begins to cry. She wards off Sadiku’s attempt to give her sympathy. Lakunle too is pushed away by Sidi as he attempts to kiss her. Lakunle then begins to vow to kill Baroka for all he had done to Sidi. By now, Sidi faces Sadiku. She accuses her as a trickster like Baroka her husband. She accuses Sadiku of trapping her for Baroka to rape off her virginity. Sadiku only replies that the situation is no news, as it has several times happened to many a young girl.

Sadiku is a confirmed saddist, for the this lack of sympathy for Sidi.

After Sidi’s disclosure that she has lost her virginity to Baroka, Lakunle promises to marry her, if she could forget the bride-price issue. But Sidi just goes back to her house. And Lakunle requests Sädiku to follow her.

The above proposal of Lakunle illustrates him as an opportunis.

Shortly, Sadiku comes out to inform Lakunle that Sidi is already preparing herself as a bride. This information puts off Lakunle, who claims he is not yet ready for any wedding. He says he still needs time to come for introduction (i.e asking) and time to prepare for the ceremonies that will go with wedding. This makes Sadiku to make jest that Lakunle is a bra….. bra… ra… rian.

Sadiku's jest illustrates the device of parody. Sadiku means to say "barbarian" which is a word Lakunle is fond of using.

Musicians and dancers arrive. Lakunle tries to drive them away, declaring that he is not ready for marriage. Sidi comes out prepared as a bride. On coming out’ she presents her photo-magazine to Lakunle and invites him to her wedding procession. Lakunle protests that he is supposed to marry Sidi. Sidi rejects Lakunle and describes him as a beardless man.

Sidi's description of Lakunle as a beardless man is a piece of invective, meaning Lakunle is not matured.

As Lakunle tries to withhold Sidi from going. She pushes him off her way, to go and kneel to receive Sadiku’s blessing. After, Sidi proceeds to Baroka’s palace as a bride on whose head no bride-price is paid.

Analysis of the Figures of Speech and Literary Devices in The Lion and The Jewel

In Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel, there are occurrences of the devices of aphorism, authoral intrusion, dramatic-irony, flashback, high burlesque, innuendo, invective, mime, parody, and symbolism.


The case of aphorism is Sidi’s proverb to Lakunle to leave Illujinle for another place, if lhe cannot live with the bushy people of llujinle.Sidi makes the proverb thus: imhis shell, he changes _house.

Authoral intrusion

There is an instance of authora/ intrusion,.at the point where Sidi says she will become ruined, if as a young girl, she becomes married to an already old Baroka. This is when she first rejects Baroka’s marriage proposal through Sadiku. With the authoral intrusion, Soyinka raises the theme that: African leaders’ selfishness is preventing African youths’ growth.

Dramatic irony

The main instance of dramatic irony occurs at the point where Baroka accuses Sadiku as a “busy-body”, in the presence of Sidi. Baroka calls Sadiku a gossip, who talks carelessly around the village. And consequently, strangers will visit him in his bedroom. Sidi responds to this accusation by consoling Baroka not to mind any unhappiness created by Sadiku’s action. Yet, the audience, except Sidi, already knows that Baroka and Sadiku jointly planned the trick that leads Sidi to Baroka’s bedroom.


There are two important instances of flashback in this play.

One is how the people of llujinle evolved the dance called “the lost traveller”. From the way Lakunle and the four girls mime the dance, it makes a flashback that the photo journalist from Lagos was the traveller in question. And he was arrested and beaten up, when he first came to llujinle in his motor-car. He must have been treated so, for not first meeting with the Bale, before going about the village to take photographs.

The second instance of flashback is where Lakunle gists Sidi of one of the reasons why Baroka is regarded as a cunny man. The gist is that a Railway line project was approved to pass through llujinle. But Baroka bungled it because the project would have benefited everybody, and not only him. Soyinka uses this flashback to illustrate the theme that: “African leaders oftenneglectetheirsubjects basic needs, for their selfish reasons”.


The occurence of high-burlesque is the emphasis on the placement of Baroka’s picture near the latrine, in the photo magazine by “the man from Lagos”. With the burlesque, the importance of Baroka the ruler of llujinle is reduced, while that of Sidi an ordinary citizen is raised. In other words, Sidi’s friends say that Sidi is more important than Baroka, to the outside world.


There is occurrence of innuendo at the point where Sidi makes a riddle that an old, miserly, polygamist and selfish man has proposed to marry her. After describing the man in her riddle as noted above, Sidi asks Baroka to advise her as a father, whether he can encourage her to marry the man. The point of innuendo is that Sidi is indirectly refering to Baroka himself.


Invective occurs twice in the play. One is Lakunle’s description of Sidi as “an illiterate stubborn goat”. Since Sidi is an illiterate, the description is a statement of direct abuse. The second occurrence is Sidi’s description of Lakunle as a immature fellow. This is when she describes Lakunle as “a beardless version of an unripened man”. An unripened man is a boy. And a boy is a beardless immature man.


Mime dances are staged thrice in the play. And each occasion contributes to the clarity of the play. The first is the mime on “the lost traveller” Through it, the reader is given a flashback to the suffering encountered by “the man from Lagos, on his first visit to llujinle. The second occasion is the mime dance of Lakunle’s description of the time prisoners started opening the site for llujinle Railway Project, before Baroka bungled it. The third mime is the mummers’ dance of a sexually impotent man in complementing the rumourthat Baroka has suddenly become impotent.


Parody occurs in Sadiku’s mis-pronunciation of the word “barbarian” as “bra…bra…ra…rian” in order to mock Lakunle, when Sidi has been tricked to go to Baroka’s bedroom. This parody shows that llujinle villagers have no regard for Lakunle.


The occurrence of symbolism is when Lakunle calls Baroka “a fox” as Sadiku is delivering Baroka’s message of invitaion to Sidi for supper. Sidi had replied that the message is Baroka’s trick to trap her to bed. In short, the symbolism is Lakunle’s description of Baroka is “a cunny character”.

Subject matter and Themes in The Lion And The Jewel

Subject matter

Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel is a socio-political commentary The play describes how the early educated Africans attempted to eradicate vital African cultural elements, while planning Africa’s development. Also it comments on how wrong the early educated Africans were, in considering the views of in educated Africans as unimportant, towards Africa’s development plan. Finally, the play comments on some vices common with African leaders, which cannot enhance Africa’s development. The Lion And The Jewel has a subject matter of satire.

The Lion and the Jewel Themes

The themes in Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel will be outlined and illustrated in the following order:

A. Themes of social change

Important cultural heritage should be preserved during a social change

“This theme is illustrated in the way Lakunle does not succeed to marry Sidi without marriage bride-price. Marriage bride price is an important African cultural heritage. So, it is good for preservation, as it does not make the wife a bought-slave, to the husband”.

Workable social changes is best achieved by mutual agreement by all interests

“The theme can be illustrated in the way Lakunle does not get followership for all his fantastic projects of social change. Though he means well, but he does not carry along the people for whom the social changes will benefit”.

Youthful exuberance is not enough to effect a realistic social change

“This theme can be illustrated with Lakunle’s low integrity. He is too feeble-minded and tactless. If he is a mature and experienced fellow, he would have prevented Sidi from going to Baroka’s house”.

B. Themes of vices against Africa’s growth

Double standard laws do not encourage growth

“This theme can be illustrated with the marriage law of llujinle Village. A virgin must not marry an ordinary citizen, without a bride-price payment to her parents. But the village ruler can trap such a virgin to bed and later keep her as a concubine”.

Corruption aiding and abetting always retard growth

“This theme can be illustrated with Sadiku’s act of sadism. She takes joy in trapping young virgins to Baroka’s bed, at intervals of five months simply because she had once fallen a victim. So, the virgins of llujinle always end up as neglected concubines of Baroka, instead of being virile wives to growing young men”

Pride is a ready-made path to destruction

“This theme can be illustrated with Sidi’s feeble mindedness. She is always proud of her beauty. And such pride makes her to fall into the trick of Baroka and Sadiku, with which she is trapped into Baroka’s bed. And she loses her virginity in the process and get the shame of being an old man’s concubine, instead of having a fine marriage, to a youthful blood like hers.

Self-centredleaders always suppress their subjects’ growth

This theme can be illustrated with Baroka’s character: He is too selfish and egocentric. He bungled the Railway project for llujinle, because the project will benefit all his subjects, and not him only.

Characterisation in The Lion And The Jewel

The principal characters in Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel are Lakunle, Sidi, Baroka and Sadiku. Their character-traits are as illustrated below:

Lakunle in the Lion and The Jewel

  • He is a major character in the play.
  • He is the pupil teacher of llujinle Primary School.
  • He is the only educated fellow at llujinle.
  • He represents the early class of educated Africans.
  • He cuts the picture of an half baked educated fellow.
  • He is an over critical character (i.e. illustrate with how he always finds fault in all Sidi’s action).
  • He is an hermit (i.e. illustrate with how he is advocating for the eradication of marriage bride-price which is an important cultural heritage cherished by the people).
  • He is an unromantic and tactless character (i.e. illustrate with how he does not know more than abusing Sidi whenever she resolutely says bride-price must be paid to her parents for her to marry Lakunle).
  • He is a heady and disrespectful character (i.e. illustrate with how he always abuse the ruler and citizens of llujinle in one fell swoop, as babaric and uncivilized. -He is a jealous character (illustrate with how he accuses Sidi of displaying the curves of her breasts to other eyes, apart from his, to see, in how she folds her wrapper round her chest).
  • He is a suicidal and boastful character (i.e. illustrate with how he always vows to deal with or kill Baroka. A case of an ordinary lazy fellow boasting to deal with a whole ruler of his community.
  • He is a male chauvinist (i.e. illustrate with how he always fakes Sidi that the female is called the weaker sex because her brain is small).
  • He is a feeble-minded goof (i.e. illustrate with how he does not act fast in preventing Sidi from going to mock Baroka’s “fake sexual impotence”
  • He is an opportunist (i.e. illustrate with his promise to marry Sidi without bride-price, after Sidi has lost her virginity to Baroka.

Sidi in The Lion and The Jewel

  • Sidi is another major character of this play.
  • She is a beautiful girl of 18 years.
  • In fact she is the one called “the jewel” in the play because of her beauty. -She is an advocate ofcultural heritage preservation (i.e. illustrate with how she refuses to marry Lakunle without a bride-price payment
  • She is an analytical character(i.e. illustrate with how she used an aphorism to advise Lakunle to leave llujinle, if he cannot live with the bushy people of the village.
  • She is feeble-minded(i.e. illustrate with how she carries her beauty too far).
  • She is an irrational character (i.e. illustrate with how her decision to go and mock Baroka for becoming sexually impotence is too hasty).
  • She is a naive character (i.e. illustrate with how she is supposed to have rushed back home from Baroka’s palace, immediately Baroka describes her as an unwanted visitor. But Sidi naively stays on and gets ruined).

RECOMMENDED: Character Analysis in Murder in the Cathedral

Baroka in the Lion and the Jewel

  • He another major character of this play.
  • He is the ruler of llujinle village.
  • He is brave, strong, wise and cunning. Hence, he is also called the Lion Of llujinle or the Fox.
  • He is a lustful character (i.e. illustrate with how he always tricks young virgins to keep as concubines every five months).
  • He is a deceifful character (i.e. illustrate with how he and Sadiku use the trick of a sudden sexual impotence to deceive and trap Sidi into his bed).
  • He is a male-chauvinist (i.e. illustrate with how he treats Ailatu the Favourite wife with disregard, when he tells her that a new wife will replace her that evening.
  • He is an egocentric character (i.e. illustrate with how he bungled llujinle Railway Project because its benefit is not meant for him only).
  • He is a pretender (i.e. illustrate with how he first treats Sidi as an unwanted visitor. in his palace, when actually he is happy to see her).
  • He is a cunning and tactical character (i.e. illustrate with how he arranges to make everyone in his palace to keep away, as he expects Sidi, so that Sidi will not be suspicious of his intention).
  • He is a criminal (i.e. illustrate with how he keeps a printing machine for government postage stamps, in the palace).

Sadiku in The Lion and The Jewel

  • She is the senior wife of Baroka.
  • She is about 70 years old.
  • She was the last favourite wife of Baroka’s father called Okiki.
  • She was inherited by custom by Baroka, as first wife, when he became the Bale of llujinle.
  • She is a real soul mate with Baroka especially on Baroka’s sexual desire to be keeping young virgins as concubines, at the interval of five months (i.e. illustrate with how she never advised Baroka on how bad his sexual desire is).
  • She is a clever character (i.e. illustrate with how she quickly invents the message of invitation to supper from Baroka to Sidi, when thereal message of marriage proposal fails).
  • She is also a trickster (i.e. illustrate with how she uses a carved image of Baroka as a sexually impotent man to trick Sidi to go and mock Baroka).
  • She is a saddist (i.e. illustrate with how she remarks that Sidi should not worry about how she lost her virginity to Baroka, simply because she too lost her own that way).

The Lion and The Jewel Questions and Answers

1. What are the various marriage customs in Practice at llujinle, according to The Lion And The Jewel by Wole Soyinka?


Marriage customs are major cultural heritage discussed in Wole Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel. In this regard, the various marriage customs practised in llujinle are illustrat. Remember, llujinle Village is the setting of the play.

Firstly, a girl must be a virgin to qualify to be married well. If she is not a virgin, people will always treat such a girl as an immodest girl. Consequently, she will be a shame to her parents.

Two, a man that wants to marry a virgin for a wife must be ready to pay marriage bride-price to the girl’s parents. In other words, a girl is considered to have married well, when bride-price is paid on her head, to her parents. Any girl that agrees to marry without bride-price is commonly considered as an immodest girl who has lustfully lost her virginity. This is the point Sidi tries to make Lakunle realised, but which Lakunle is regarding as barbaric.

When a young man and a virgin girl agrees to marry, there must be introduction. This is what Lakunle calls “there is the asking to be done”, while Sadiku teases him that Sidi is preparing herself for marriage. And Lakunle in turn, says Sidi should have been more patient for a day or two. It even turns out that Sidi is preparing for a marriage to Baroka.

Another custom is the fact that a young man that wants to marry must host friends and well-wishers in entertainment. This is what Lakunle means when he says “l have to prepare for the ceremonies that go with marriage”.

There is the custom of dowry payment by the parents of the girl to the man to marry their daughter. Sidi points this out, while using an innuendo to tell Baroka that he is old to be her father. Here, Sidi has put a riddle to Baroka that she wants his advice that if he were her father, would he agree to pay a dowry to an old man, who already has many wives, but wants to marry her, in addition.

Furthermore, there is the custom of bride commandering at llujinle. For example, Baroka does not go for any asking parents. Neither, does he pay any bride-price on Sidi’s head, to her pare*ts. Yet, Sidi eventually marries Baroka, at the end of the play.

Finally, there is the custom of wife inheritance in practice at llujinle. Sadiku the oldest wife of Baroka is an inherited wife. She was the last favourite wife of Okiki – the father of Baroka. So, Baroka inherited her when he became the Bale of llujinle, upon his father’s death.

The above enumerated marriage customs are practised at llujinle.

How effectively does Soyinka use mime, flashback, innuendo and parody to aid your understanding of The Lion And The Jewel?


Mime, flashback, innuendo and parody are examples of the devices used by Soyinka in The Lion And The Jewel. I shall enumerate them in the following order.

Mime dances are staged thrice in the play.The first time is the dance of the lost is staged during the second visit of the man from Lagos. Sidi makes some four girls and Lakunle to stage this dance.The dance is about the man from Lagos during his first time journey to llujinle . He had come in a car.Through the mime, there is indication that it was the first time llujinle villagers wåuld see a car. So, this is why the journey is turned into an entertainment subject.

Towards the end of the mime, an important flashback is illustrated. Here, Lakunle who acts the part of a car owner, driver and photo journalist is accused and maltreated. He is accused as a rapist, who wants to steal the maiden-head of the jewel of llujinle Village. In the mime, the journalist is taking photographs. Suddenly, there is a loud cry from the bush. So, he follows the direction. He comes across the girl who is screaming. He must have found the girl naked. As he attempts to take her photograph, some men show up and arrest him. The mime dance of “the lost traveller” is therefore a flashback which enable us to know the suffering encountered by the Lagos photp journalist during his first journey to llujinle.

There is another flashback by Lakunle. He makes this while demonstrating one of the reasons why Baroka is described as a fox (i.e. a cunning man). He reveals to Sidi, in the presence of Sadiku that Baroka bungled the Railway Project approved for llujinle. And Lakunle claims that Baroka acted so because the project would have benefited everybody and not Baroka alone. To support his point, a mime dance of the prisoners who cleared the site of the project was staged. Also in a dance form, how bribes of money, goats and cocks were given to the Surveyor in charge of the project was staged. It is from this flashback and mime, that I understand that Baroka is an egocentric character

A beautiful piece of innuendo is illustrated through Sidi. This is when she makes a riddle to ask the question that if Baroka were her father, would he pay a dowry to a man old enough to be her father and already has many wives•, for him to marry her. This description is an innuendo because Baroka himself is the person whom Sidi is describing. This innuendo makes me to understand that Sidi would not have willingly married Baroka, if she is not been trapped, through Sadiku’s tricks.

The case of parody is demonstrated by Sadiku. This is where he calls Lakunle a bra…bra…ra…rian. She had meant “barbarian”. Lakunle is fond of referring to the people of llujinle as barbarians. From the parody, I understand that the people of llujinle have not for once taken Lakunle as a serious person.

Practice Exercise

1 . Does Baroka act like a fox and a lion at all, in Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel?

Is Sidi a victim of helplessness, or personal flaw, according to Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel?

How does Soyinka present Teacher Lakunle as an exuberant youth in

The Lion And The Jewel?

Enumerate the themes in Soyinka’s The Lion And The Jewel.

Enumerate the number of tricks used by both Sadiku and Baroka to trap Sidi for Baroka’s bed.

Davidposh of Campusvibes

I'm a dedicated and progressive individual with an exceptional work ethic and client oriented service aptitude. I write to inform and educate. Currently I'm an English language students Lagos State University.

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