Motherhood and Sundry Preoccupations in Hope Eghagha's

In: Matatu
Sunny Awhefeada
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A significant motif in African poetry which critics have ignored over the years is that of motherhood. This theme has been explored by many an African writer, depicting its various manifestations – physically, psychologically, and spiritually. However, the metaphoric aggregation of the many aspects of maternity has not been met with the appropriate critical response. The aim of this study is to examine the foregrounding of motherhood in Hope Eghagha's . What is revealed is not a romanticization of motherhood, but a tear-glazed threnodic articulation of a mother's last moments on earth, though with telling glances at the past which poeticize the essence of motherhood. Also discernible in this collection are other sundry themes which, often with a certain cynicism, re-create the nature of humanity, complementing Eghagha's versification of motherhood. These themes – greed, wickedness, love, betrayal – are largely ignored in the evaluation of African poetry. The present study excavates them, arguing that they deserve critical articulation for African poetry to be seen as representing life as it is lived and experienced.

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