Keywords : Bildungsroman
Search Of Identity: A Thematic Analysis Of Ben Okri‟s Select Novels
European Journal of Molecular & Clinical Medicine,
2020, Volume 7, Issue 7, Pages 6121-6125
A mundane reading and review of Ben Okri’s fiction leads readers to believe and categorise it as fiction containing common post-colonial themes. A nation born out of shackles of colonialism facing cold was situation, the impending struggle between colonizers and the colonized, corruption, female subjugation etc. are few of the themes readers think are prevalent in Ben Okri’s fiction. But a closer examination of his fiction ushers us into his techniques and literary style with a newness, interweaving simple plots and characters into complex ones giving it a unique identity. One can easily notice how his fiction which has deep insight of African traditional practices presented in a modernized way, shows myriad of themes with a blend of traditions and modernism or bildungsroman and Kunstler roman, all covered and webbed in a quest of identity for a Nigerian who is relegated to oblivion, who seems to be lost since his birth, who has been downtrodden throughout his life, who has been oppressed and has endured atrocities of colonialism, who has been deprived of justice and social equality, who has bruised on his face whenever he has tried to object and question the people in power, who has been victim of political unrest and cold war, who hasn’t lost his spirit and has refused to give in to the hardships of life. Versatility of themes, evident in the varied range ofOkri’s writing, right from novels to collection of short stories and poems, is a deep reflection of his thought processes, a testimony of his undying spirit and endeavours to establish an identity.