Usawiri wa Wahusika wa Kiume kama Kielelezo cha Udume katika Tamthilia za Chacha Nyaigotti-Chacha
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This dissertation is titled, Usawiri wa Wahusika wa Kiume kama Kielelezo cha Udume katika Tamthilia za Chacha Nyaigotti-Chacha, that is, ‘The Portrayal of male characters as a representation of patriarchy in Chacha Nyaigotti-Chacha’s Plays”. The four plays under consideration are: Mke Mwenza (1982), Wingu Jeusi (1987), Marejeo (1986) and Hukumu (1992). The dissertation analyzes the portrayal of male characters in terms of how they exemplify patriarchal traits within the larger context of gender relations. It is an investigation into the literary aspect of characterization, which focuses on the male characters’ personality, behaviour and roles as well as how such attributes represent patriarchy in the respective plays. In addition, the investigation of the male characters was undertaken by comparing and analyzing them side by side with their counterparts, the female characters. And in order to analyze the gender relations deeply, the research was based on the feminist literary theory as the theoretical framework. By comparing all the four plays, we discovered that the roles and status of the male character, as well as the levels and effect of the patriarchal system generally, progressively take a downward trend, as Chacha writes one play after another. This trend may be explained in terms of the rising levels of education and the creation of awareness about women’s rights and abilities. Accordingly, it becomes obvious that education and awareness about women’s rights is progressively eroding the hitherto strong and commanding state and status of the males in society. Furthermore, the apparent downward trend of patriarchy is, agreeably, depicted in the structuring of the dissertation under the two main sub-titles: Misingi na Maovu ya Kidume Katika Jamii (Foundations and Evils of Patriarchy in Society), based on Mke Mwenza and Wingu Jeusi (Chapter Two); and Changamoto na Mapinduzi Dhidi ya Udume (Challenges and Revolutionary Tendencies against Patriarchy), based on Marejeo and Hukumu (Chapter Three). The first chapter presents an introduction and the background to the study. The chapter explains different aspects pertaining to the topic of the study, such as: characterization and dramatization, the contribution and position of Prof. Chacha in the history of Kiswahili drama, as well as the meaning of patriarchy as a social concept. The chapter also describes Chacha’s personal views on feminism and literature. The statement of the problem, scope, objectives conceptual framework and definition of terms are also given in this chapter. The chapter, further, gives the literature review and methodology of the study. In short, all the elements that constituted the Research Proposal are incorporated in this chapter. Chapter two, as earlier indicated, analyzes the foundations and the evils of patriarchy. These underlying issues about patriarchy are analyzed by focusing on two respective plays: Mke Mwenza (1982) and Wingu Jeusi (1987). The chapter discusses culture and tradition, pointing out how they affect people’s beliefs and life generally. By analyzing the evils relating to patriarchy, the system is presented as being hostile and discriminative in society. Chapter three discusses the challenges and related revolutionary tendencies that are rising up against patriarchy. This sub-topic is analyzed within the context of two other plays; Marejeo (1986) and Hukumu (1992). The chapter exhibits the efforts of women – as a maginalised group in socity – against the whims of patriarchal discrimination, exploitation and mistreatment. The determination of women to defend themselves against male dominance is enhanced through formal education, as well as the creation of general awareness about social equality and human rights. Generally, the patriarchal system appears to be subsiding. This fact is further emphasized through the playwright’s use of mockery in his presentation of some of the male characters such as “Mwizimiwa” Sasati, in Hukumu. The fourth and last chapter concludes the dissertation. The conclusion describes the results of the study by testing the hypothesis. Accordingly, most male characters attest to patriarchy by typically being portrayed as strong, assertive, fearless and courageous persons. This is more so with the older generation of males. The youthful males are less patriarchal. Lastly, we give a number of recommendations arising from our investigation. The dissertation ends with an emphatic note that patriarchy is a hostile, discriminative system but whose impact on society appears to be fading away as more people acquire formal education and awareness about their human rights.