The Lion and The Jewel main character Sidi sitting in the middle of the picture wearing a striped dress with the outlines of two male faces on other side of her

The Lion and the Jewel

by Wole Soyinka
Start Free Trial

Discuss the theme of young versus old in The Lion and the Jewel.

Expert Answers

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

The theme of young versus old in The Lion and the Jewel is illustrated by the juxtaposition between the young man Lakunle and traditional village life in Ilujinle.

On the face of it, one would think that Sidi, a young woman, would opt to marry Lakunle, a young, modern man...

See
This Answer Now

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

Get 48 Hours Free Access

The theme of young versus old in The Lion and the Jewel is illustrated by the juxtaposition between the young man Lakunle and traditional village life in Ilujinle.

On the face of it, one would think that Sidi, a young woman, would opt to marry Lakunle, a young, modern man with a somewhat enlightened outlook on marriage—though his treatment of Sidi would suggest otherwise. Sidi says she will agree to marry Lakunle if he agrees to pay her bride price. However, Lakunle's objection to paying the bride price frustrates her, as she still values tradition, and his disregard for the life she chooses ultimately leads to her rejection of him.

The society depicted in The Lion and the Jewel may be in the process of modernization, but this is a long, slow, gradual process. In the meantime, the old traditions, some of which Sidi simply views as comfortable and practical, still remain very powerful.

Last Updated by eNotes Editorial on