Death and the King's Horseman by Wole Soyinka

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Why do the people attach blame to Elesin for failure to complete the ritual of suicide in Death and the King's Horseman?

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Blaze Bergstrom eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In Wole Soyinka ’s play, Elesin Oba is a high-ranking Yoruba nobleman who is bound to serve his king in the capacity of horseman. One of the sacred duties of this role, as Elesin well knows, is to sacrifice his own life for the sake of the king, following his death, and of the whole society. Not just the suicide but the proper completion of the ritual is necessary for all to go smoothly. While in some ways it is understandable that Elesin wants to prolong his time on earth, he decides to marry and have sex with a young woman, even though she is otherwise committed. Even had his delay not resulted in his arrest, the failure to complete the ritual at...

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khevlin | Student

Since he was lustful and could not resist the charms of the young beautiful girl. He had a greed of flesh which eventually led him to his downfall.

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arstetics | Student

   Elesin's actions was going to bring about chaos in their world, and since its a birth right role and his destiny, he is responsible for his actions and the success of his transition.

   

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