Meaning Reconstruction in Some Selected Nigerian Drama: Character Deconstruction as Panacea

Jibril Imam Mohammed-Kabir, Lucy Ada Odusina-Onaivi


Young readers and interpreters often misinterpret and misjudge character construct in Nigerian playtexts. This is because African playwrights especially Nigeria’s have been dominated and influenced by Western playwrights and writers with the styles of character construct in their playtexts. Thus the problem of this study centres on the Euro-American perceptions of character construct on the sensibilities of Nigerian playwrights. Hence, the study aims at evolving means of interpretation of Nigerian playtexts through character deconstruction and other artistic components and compositions from the point of view of the playwrights and interpreters. Objectives of the study include: to examine the object of character construct as foundation for analysis and interpretation. To deconstruct the selected plays through analyses and appraisal of character construct and characterization. The study is hinged on the theoretical premise of Ricoeur’s theory of interpretation that made the researcher’s meaning generation possible. The study adopts content analysis approach of the qualitative research method. The findings reveal that from the African deconstruction standpoint, character construction, reconstruction and deconstruction in Nigerian drama is aimed at effective generation and communication of meaning. The study recommends that character deconstruction should be key anchor for the interpretation of contemporary Nigerian playtexts. The study concludes that cultural elements add to the construct and impart of the dramatic products. Hence, deconstruction should be applied as analytical tool for character deconstruction in contemporary Nigerian drama.


Character; Nigerian drama; Reconstruction; Deconstruction and meaning making

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