Clashes of Culture in Ben Okri’s Tales of Freedom
The scope of this paper is to find the clashes between the cultures and Nigerian identity among tale in Ben Okri’s Tales of Freedom (2009). Ben Okri is a prominent Nigerian poet and novelist, and the Booker prize winner for his classical piece The Famished Road (1991). Tales of Freedom is a deviant piece to the reader as they depict what the Nigerian blacks of modern times face in their day to day life. This is a collection of short stories named ‘Stokus’, which is a new term coined by Ben Okri. It is an amalgam of Haiku and short stories. His first story ‘The Cosmic Destiny’ is like an absurd drama where as the other stories are written in techniques familiar to the ordinary reader. Okri reveals the secret of tales that each story is like a journey of life. The characters of the tales are products of a multi culture society and they search of identity. Writers like Christopher Okigbo and Chinua Achebe have brought into focus the cultural element of their nativity. These elements like proverbs, folklore and storytelling are the root of African culture. Okri makes use of them to portray the clashes of culture. He is fond of storytelling, born with stories which reveal his tradition; his works retell his native history, culture and traditions to this contemporary society. This paper attempts to find the hybrid culture which is a result of the clashes of culture with the traditional root. This study focuses on the contemporary experiences with tradition as their backdrop.
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