'A Rotimi in the Sun': Lorraine Hansberry, Ola Rotini and the Connections of African Diasporan Theatre

Wetmore Jr., Kevin J.
March 2010
African Performance Review;2010, Vol. 4 Issue 1, p27
Academic Journal
Ola Rotimi, who attended university in the United States from 1959 to 1966, was involved in African politics in the U.S. during that period and interested in the interrelationship between Africa and AfricanAmerica. In Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again, his thesis play for Yale, subsequently rewritten for production in Nigeria, he wrote a play shaped by Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, shaped by that play's depiction of a romantic relationship between an African student studying in the United States and an African-American woman seeking to connect to the Motherland. Whereas Hansberry depicts an idealistic, politically involved woman who grows concerned about corruption in post-independence Africa, Rotimi shows the African-American woman arriving in Africa and coping with the post-independence reality. While not a sequel, when Our Husband is placed in dialogue with A Raisin, one can see similar concerns, themes and issues between the two, particularly in relation to post-Independence corruption in African societies and government, which indicate a need for greater consideration of African and American intertexts during the sixties and seventies.


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