Blackism and Pan-Africanism in Post-Colonial African Literature: A Reading of Femi Osofisan’s Plays

Keywords: blackism, pan-Africanism, Negritude, drama, Femi Osofisan


This article is a thematic study of Femi Osofisan’s plays that explicitly capture the essence of blackism, nationalism and pan-Africanism as a depiction of the playwright’s ideology and his total commitment to the evolution of a new social order for black people. The article critically discusses the concepts of blackism and pan-Africanism as impelling revolutionary tools that seek to re-establish and reaffirm the primacy, identity, and personality of black people in Africa and in the diaspora. It also discusses blackism as an African renaissance ideology that campaigns for the total emancipation of black people and a convulsive rejection of all forms of colonialism, neo-colonialism, Eurocentrism, nepotism and ethnic chauvinism, while advocating an acceptance of Afrocentrism, unity and oneness of blacks as indispensable tools needed for the dethronement of all forms of racism, discrimination, oppression and dehumanisation of black people. The article hinges the underdevelopment of the black continent on the deliberate attempt of the imperialists and their black cronies who rule with iron hands to keep blacks in perpetual slavery. It countenances Femi Osofisan’s call for unity and solidarity among all blacks as central to the upliftment of Africans. The article recognises Femi Osofisan as a strong, committed and formidable African playwright who utilises theatre as a veritable and radical platform to fight and advocate for the liberation of black people by arousing their revolutionary consciousness and by calling on them to hold their destinies in their hands if they are to be emancipated from the shackles of oppression.

Author Biography

Clement Olujide Ajidahun, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Nigeria

Asociate Professor