Death And The King 's Horseman Essay examples

916 Words Sep 15th, 2016 4 Pages
After reading the play “Death and the King’s Horseman,” by Wole Soyinka, Elesin Oba, the protagonist and late king’s horseman identifies as a brave and somewhat loyal leader to the people of the village, until he fails to uphold his duty of sacrificing himself. Olunde, the son of the King’s horseman is a different kind of leader. Though he identifies with western culture as he has studied in England for years, Olunde has a deep admiration for the traditions of his native culture. Despite being determined to fulfil his duty and die for his people, Elesin proves to be a disgrace to the people, whereas Olunde shows his true colors as a dutiful leader.
In the opening scene, Elesin enters the market followed by a grand parade of drummers and praise singers. He was also dressed in elaborate robes, displaying his importance in the village. According to Yoruban rule, death of the king calls for death of the king’s horseman as well. The people of the village believed in three worlds: the world of the living, the world of the dead, and the world of the unknown. As the king’s horseman, Elesin must commit suicide to accompany his king to the world of the dead and to uphold his peoples’ tradition. When the praise singer doubts Elesin, he assures him he will fulfil he duty and die for his king and his people. Elesin continues to reassure the praise singer and the women that he will indeed fulfill his fate by stating, “I am master of my Fate. When the hour comes watch me dance along the…

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