Culture and womanhood in Uhambo lwenkululeko

Mntanga, Overman Mziwakhe (2002-03)

Thesis (MA)--University of Stellenbosch, 2002.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The study examines issues of culture in Mcani's drama Uhambo Lwenkululeko (Journey of Freedom). Following Bauerlein (1997:63), it is argued that the study of women in literature forces a critical examination of the way women in literature have been portrayed in the past because of male domination. The study aims to establish what the progress is in the portrayal of women characters after the introduction of the new dispensation in South Africa. This study shows in the discussion of the theoretical aspects of culture in Chapter 2 that culture is an elusive concept because it has different definitions. Culture is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, customs and all other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society. This implies that culture entails everything that contributes to the survival of man, comprising both physical and social factors. In Chapter 3, it is established that the author has excellently handled both characterisation and the plot in Uhambo Lwenkululeko (Journey of Freedom). The plot structure of Uhambo Lwenkululeko (Journey of Freedom) in particular, has been handled successfully by the author. For example, by opening his drama with conflict, in the exposition, the author has managed to show is that conflict is the source of action in drama. It is the aspect that triggers characters to respond either positively or negatively to a particular opposing force. We have established in Chapter 4 that societies have certain basic needs or requirements that must be met if they are to survive. For example, a means of producing food may be seen as a functional pre-requisite since without it, members of society could not survive. This might have been one of the reasons why the boys are busy fishing in the drama. According to the findings in this study, men and women are portrayed equal with regard to reason. We established that the belief that women lack the capacity to fully exercise the powers of human reason is a deeply rooted prejudice.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie ondersoek vraagstukke oor kultuur in Mcani se drama Uhambo Iwenkululeko. In navolging van Bauerlein (1997:63), word daar aangevoer dat die studie van vroue in die letterkunde 'n kritiese ondersoek noodsaak van die wyse waarop vroue in die verlede voorgestel is in die letterkunde op grond van dominering deur mans. Die studie poog om vas te stel wat die vordering is in die voorstelling van vroue in die letterkunde na die invoer van In nuwe demokratiese bestel in Suid-Afrika. Die studie toon aan in die bespreking van die teoretiese aspekte van kultuur in hoofstuk 2 dat die kultuur In ontwykende konsep is wat verskillende definisies het. Kultuur is 'n komplekse geheel wat insluit aspekte soos kennis, geloof, kuns, regsisteem, morele sieninge, gewoontes en ander vermoens wat deur mense verwerf word as lede van In gemeenskap. Oit impliseer dat kultuur alles behels wat bydra tot die oorlewing van rnense, insluitende fisiese sowel as sosiale faktore. In hoofstuk 3 word dit bevind dat die skrywer die karakterisering sowel as die intrige in Uhambo Iwenkubuleko meesterlik hanteer. Veral die intrige is op 'n uitstaande wyse hanteer deur die skrywer. Oeur in die begin van die drama konflik in te voer, het die skrywer daarin geslaag om aan te toon dat konflik die bron van aksie in die drama is. Oit is die aspek wat karakters aanspoor om of positief of negatief te reageer op In spesifieke opponerende krag. Oaar is bevind in hoofstuk 4 dat gemeenskappe sekere basiese behoeftes en vereistes het waaraan voldoen moet word indien hulle wil oorleef. In Wyse vir die produksie van voedsel is In vereiste, aangesien In gemeenskap nie daarsonder kan oorleef nie. Oit kon In moontlike rede wees waarom die skrywer verwys na die seuns wat visvang in die drama. Volgens die bevindings van die drama, word mans en vroue gelykwaardig voorgestel wat betref redeneringsvermoe. Oaar word bevind dat die siening dat vroue 'n onverrnoe het om die magte van redenering te beoefen 'n diepgewortelde vooroordeel is.

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