Tell It to Women Osonye Tess Onwueme’s Tell It to Women is a dazzling drama that is pegged on political metaphor. The story revolves around a group of women who portrays themes of voice and silence. The setting of this story may be traced from the postcolonial period in African town in rural Nigeria (Onwueme, What Mama Said… 09). Onwueme describes a tale that focuses on the feminism, gender, culture, and sexuality, in the broadness of Euro centrism. In her work, the author has a provided each character with their unique role of creating a universal truth. More of this is witnessed with a background chorus and voices of women who perpetuate a deeply mystifying songs and motions that creates a colorful fluidity (Onwueme 128). The story is formatted in form of a play that follows a dialogue thereby allowing the growth and development of character in a vibrant and prominent manner through murmur and mute. The play is actually a lush in dichotomies. It presents of rural polarization against urban background that shares both negative and positive prejudice. Main characters are from both the urban and rural backgrounds that are presented by different cultures and buildings and structures connecting these lands. Symbolically, the rural areas or towns represent North America while the rural areas are symbolic Africa. There prejudice that lies in the story is that the North America or the Eurocentric culture is superior. therefore, the rural culture or Africa is deemed inferior (Onwueme, What Mama Said… 21). Apparently, the stigmas in the rural areas affect inhabitants negatively. For instance, the lives of Ruth and Daisy advocate some balance that fulfills lives of the rural women. The perseverance reveals independent and collective identity that aims at breaking that daunting traditional forces transcending to modernity (Onwueme 157). However, this is not an indication that the tradition is superior or inferior to the modernity but it reveals that certain aspects of modernity need to be incorporated into entire tradition or the rural lifestyle. Another major ideal presented in the story is the polarity between women and men. The rural women are represented to inhibit fundamental knowledge that they present through the power of their voices. For instance, Daisy and Ruth are initially introduced as strong women, but with difference in expertise. This practically revealed when they interact with the urban visitor, Yemoja. Daisy revert prejudice towards Yemoja whereby he strips her from the power of voice by silencing her. Silencing Daisy demonstrates that the modernistic power is dynamic as opposed to the hierarchy of female submissiveness and male dominancy in the African tradition (Onwueme, What Mama Said… 79). Despite the story revealing hierarchy only among the gender, this practice is also nestled through class and race. The relationship between Ruth and Daisy is a fundamental intrigue that is also of great importance. The symbols may be narrowed down to focus on the limitations of the western ideologies especially in relations to class that devalues the rurally cultured women. In fact, there is an ideal notion that their romantic partners only concentrates on homosexual orientation that the western cultures regards as sexual freedom and exploration. Additionally, there is concern on the liberation of western women and men that only belittles and dehumanizes women. The story, Tell It to Women is actually an integration of culture and people as a unified vessel of truth and understanding. At some point, the author used the lines, That is THE BETTER LIFE! Not wiping out. But adding… adding new things to our life…not taking away the good things we already have for mere promises of value that is not yet tested (Onwueme, 179). This implies that with wisdom, persons may hold tradition as they adapt to new ways of life. Apparently, if you tell it to women, the entire community will have to know it, so Tell It to Women. Works CitedOnwueme, Osonye T. Tell it to women: An epic drama for women. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1997. Print.Onwueme, Osonye T.What Mama Said: An Epic Drama. Detroit, Mich: Wayne State Univ. Press, 2003. Print.
Tell It To Women