What are the difficulties faced by the main character in the play?

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Noelle Thompson | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

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In order to answer your question, first we need to discover who the main character is. Without much hesitation, this eNotes Educator can say that the main character of the book is Remi and that his “difficulties” are many. Quite simply, no matter where Remi finds himself, he always feels the effects of racism and corruption.

In his village, Remi feels “trapped” by the community that wants to cling to the separatist ideals. This is the first real difficulty that Remi faces. You see, Remi has dreams of a united South Africa, but flees his village because they don’t seem to share his dreams. It is precicely because of politics that Remi leaves his village and runs to the city. Although Remi is expected to return to the village, he does not return until the end when he simply spouts criticism of the village and his wife. Another difficulty Remi faces in the village is not believing he is worthy of love from his brother’s widow. Remi marries her, but leaves for the city anyway. Unfortunately for Remi, the city doesn’t give much to keep Remi’s dream of unification alive.

In the city Remi still is affected by corruption and racism. This is the next difficulty. As you can see, Remi thinks his difficulties will change in regards to setting. Unfortunately, they do not change. Corruption still exists no matter where Remi goes. Remi originally goes to the city under the guise of going to college, but is really fleeing the political issues of the village. Further, because Remi flees his feelings of unworthiness in love, he eventually commits adultery in the city with Jane.

In conclusion, it is important to realize that the reason for the title of this play is that is exactly what Remi is trying to become: a black hermit. Remi admits this to his friend Omange after moving to the city saying that he is “trapped by the tribe,” but finds no way to be a true black hermit no matter where he goes.

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