Metaphoric Topicality in Femi Osofisan’s Drama


This paper examines the functional and the significant role of metaphors in literary works. It discusses the centrality of metaphors as a dominant literary device consciously deployed by Femi Osofisan to project the theme of oppression, dehumanization, social injustice and poverty in his plays. The paper focuses on the use of animal and predatory metaphors in Osofisan’s plays to launch an offensive literary attack on the rich and the ruling elite in the society who use their privileged positions to brazenly oppress and brutalize the poor and the downtrodden. The paper, on the other hand, examines the appropriate use of animal metaphors to enlighten and educate the poor on their precarious condition as preys in the hands of the carnivorous ruling class. Finally, the paper discusses the settings and the titles of Osofisan’s plays, the quest motif and the traditional modes as metaphors for oppression.

Share and Cite:

Ajidahun, C. (2013) Metaphoric Topicality in Femi Osofisan’s Drama. Advances in Literary Study, 1, 1-4. doi: 10.4236/als.2013.11001.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Finch, G. (2000). Linguistic terms and concepts. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
[2] Lakoff, G., & Johnson, M. (1980). Metaphors we live by. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
[3] Levin, S. (1977). The Semantics of Metaphor. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.
[4] Osofisan, F. (1994). The Album Of the Midnight Blackout. Ibadan: Ibadan UP.
[5] Osofisan, F. (1989). Another raft. Lagos: Malthouse Press.
[6] Osofisan, F. (1992). Aringindin and the Nightwatchmen. Ibadan: Hei- nemann.
[7] Osofisan, F. (1990). Birthdays are not for dying and other plays: The inspector and the hero, and fires burn and die hard. Lagos: Malthouse Press.
[8] Osofisan, F. (1976). The chattering and the song. Ibadan: UP.
[9] Osofisan, F. (1991). Esu and the vagabond minstrels. Ibadan: New Horn Press.
[10] Osofisan, F. (1986). Farewell to a cannibal rage. Ibadan: Evans Pub- lishers.
[11] Osofisan, F. (1986). Midnight hotel. Ibadan: Evans Publishers.
[12] Osofisan, F. (1983). Morountodun and other plays; No more the wasted breed and red is the freedom road. Lagos: Longman.
[13] Osofisan, F. (1980). Once upon four robbers. Ibadan: Heinemann.
[14] Osofisan, F. (1999). Recent outings II two plays: Nkrumah-ni…Africa ni! and reel, rwanda! Ibadan: Opon Ifa Readers.
[15] Osofisan, F. (1999). Recent outings I two plays: Tegonni, an african antigone, and many colours make the thunder-king. Ibadan: Opon Ifa Readers.
[16] Osofisan, F. (1975). A restless run of locusts. Ibadan: Onibonoje Press.
[17] Osofisan, F. (1995). Twingle-Twangle: A twynning tayle. Lagos: Long- man.
[18] Osofisan, F. (1986). Two one-act plays: The oriki of a grasshopper and Altine’s wrath. Ibadan: New Horn Press.
[19] Osofisan, F. (2009). Women of Owu. Ibadan: University Press Plc.
[20] Osofisan, F. (1993). Yungba Yungba and the dance contest. Ibadan: Heinemann.
[21] MacCormac, E. R. (1972). Metaphor and literature. Journal of Aesthetic Education, 6, 57-70. doi:10.2307/3331393
[22] Semino, E., & Steen, G. (2008). Metaphor in literature. In R. W. Gibbs Jr. (Ed.), The Cambridge handbook of metaphor and thought. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 232-235. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511816802.015

Copyright © 2024 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.