What do the similarities and differences between the two cultures in Death and the King's Horseman demonstrate?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Indeed, the original question presents a challenging task. Wole Soyinka, the author of Death and the King's Horseman, expressly warned his readers against a "sadly familiar reductionist tendency" to focus on cultures instead of "threnodic essence" (Soyinka, 2003, p. 3)."Threnodic essence" can be defined as "a presence or quality of death and lamentation." For Soyinka, "threnodic essence" not only is the demonstration pertaining to the two cultures, but also comprises much of the meaning and theme of Death and the King's Horseman.

The similarities and differences between the two cultures (Yoruba/African culture and English-colonial culture) in Soyinka's Death and the King's Horseman help to demonstrate the vision of a culture in which threnodic essence is of greatest importance. The reason for Soyinka's emphasis on threnodic essence, as opposed to an emphasis on the similarities and differences between the two general cultures just mentioned, is due to the universal nature of threnodic essence;...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 533 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on