Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit

Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit
Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit

Abstract: This research study focused on Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit. Literature reflects the prevailing tendencies within a society, and charlatanism and Puritanism have been among the major issues that call for concern in our society. A survey of Soyinka’s The Trials of Brother Jero and Ngugi’s The Black Hermit revealed the effect of charlatanism and Puritanism respectively as they depict wrongs and corrections. The effects of charlatanism are exploitation and disunity, whereas reformation and cultural conflict are of Puritanism. This work is a unique contribution to the growth of literature in the contemporary society and a perfect instrument for the reflection of the society in which we live in.

Soyinka’s The Trials of Brother Jero, Ngugi’s The Black Hermit are satirizing the conduct of charlatan, and the same time paving way for a corrections (purification). It is recommended among other that, Government should stop all single palour fellowship of few members, Since unemployment may cause charlatanism, government should create job opportunities. Education is the bedrock of peace, unity and development in the society; therefore Government should made free and compulsory education to all citizen.


Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit



1.1 Background to the Study

The word Charlatanism and Puritanism is in sharp contrast to each other when looking at the attitudes that govern their conduct. Firstly, charlatanism can be seen as the belief and practice of the charlatans who claims to have knowledge or skill that they do not really have. The word comes from French charlatan, a seller of machine who created an outdoor stage show to lure people with his fake medicine. It can also be traced to Spanish charlatan who was known for his quacks.

The quackery practice, via to some form of pretense or deception to obtain money, fame, power and other advantages is embedded in charlatanism. Thus, attitude to life that guides charlatan’s behaviour is Charlatanism. Due to prevalent acts of charlatans in our society, Wole Soyinka mirrored and satirized the act in person of Brother Jero, when looking at spiritual communication who fake evidence that a spirit is making contact with the medium and seeker.

Looking at Puritanism is a belief and practice of the puritans who have strict and moral attitudes toward church, society and so on. The puritans did not give themselves this name. At first, the name “Puritanism” was used to humiliate the puritans, but after a while they adopted the name for themselves. The name comes from the word “Pure” and has the meaning “clean” Unspoiled” Proper”.

The root of Puritanism is seen in the beginning of the English reformation. In 1530’s, King Henry Viii repudiate Papal authority and transform the Church of Rome into Church of England. This religious reform movement firstly arose within Church of England in the late sixteen. It was not only a historically specific phenomenon coincident with the founding of New England, but was also a way of being in the world a style of response to life experience that has reverberated through people life. In 17th century, when these Puritans noted for morals and religious earnestness that  enwrapped their ways of life, they sought to reform the church, thus,  using or turning to preaching, using variety of experiments, pamphlets,   religious expression, organization and in social behaviour.

This conduct is portrayed by Nggugi Wa-thiong’o in the Black Hermit where Remi and his friend Omange were in the force of transformation.


Charlatanism And Puritanism In Soyinka’s The Trials Of Brother Jero And Ngugi’s The Black Hermit

1.2 Statement of the Problem

One may ask, what could be the cause of the downward trend that has sabotaged the peace, unity, progress and national interest in our society. The indisputable fact is that, the deviant way of life is echoed in our society “Nigeria” as it give birth to bribery and corruption, deception, exploitation, self centered, and cultural conflict.

No wonder, when Paul Apostle in his letter to Corinthian Says. But understand this that in the last day, there will come time of difficulty, for people will be lover of selves, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of Godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people……..(2nd  Corinth. 11 vs 13-15)

With this Charlatan trend in our society, a force of transformation is applied by the Puritans to correct the suppose effect thereby lead to chaos and differences in beliefs.  The problem of this research work is to find out the effect of Charlatanism and Puritanism in church and society respectively.


1.3 Aims and Objectives.

The aims and objectives of this study on Charlatanism and Puritanism in Soyinka’s The Trials of Brother Jero and Nggugi’s The Black Hermit are as follows:

  1. To ascertain the effects of Charlatanism and Puritanism in the church and society respectively.
  2. To profess ways that should be adopted to correct the bad effect of the problem.

1.4 Significance of the Study

The alarming case of exploitation, cunning nature of this 21st century prophet, and other deviant act is no news in our churches and society today; and in the same vein, the tribal cankerworm that has eaten deep the unity and oneness of our nation can only be dealt with through proper orientation of the effect of these monsters. Thus,

  1. In no small measure shall this work be to Christians who are ready to serve God in spirit and in truth by taking them to the known of this fake prophet.
  2. In a country like Nigeria, where tribalism is the order of the day, this work will sabotage it and in turn bring to lime-light the importance of oneness and unity.
  3. This work will be of help to researcher and later- day scholars who will carry out research on the related topic.

1.5 Research Methodology

The research study uses both primary and secondary sources. The primary source refers to the use of two texts: The Trial of Brother Jero and The Black Hermit as the primary texts for discussion while the secondary sources refers to the use of library, internet, journals for the purpose of the study.

1.6 Scope and Limitation of the study.

The scope of this study is limited to primary and secondary source which comprises of   the primary text: Soyinka’s The Trials of Brother Jero and Nggugi’s The Black Hermit­. The secondary source includes Oxford Dictionary, related texts, online references and so on. As such will not affect the result of my findings.

1.7 Definition of Term

For the purpose of emphasis and clarity, the following terms is given a brief definition as follows:

Charlatanism: This is the belief of the charlatan who claims to have knowledge or skills that they do not really have, but for the purpose of this study, it refers to belief of quacks and cunning people that use the guise of pretense and claims to exploit people.

Puritanism: This is the belief of the puritans who have strict moral attitudes for reformation.

Wolf in a white a garment: This refers to quack and false prophet who pretend to be of God.

Tribal Cankerworm/Monster: this refers to evils or dangerous influence that spreads and affect people behaviour.

Seeker: This is person that tries to find solution to his or her problem.

Medium: This is a channel through which information is passed.

Originally posted on June 16, 2021 @ 3:15 pm

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Peter Hezekiah Lawson (Sir Pee). The CEO of A reputable researcher, Web Developer, ICT Instructor and a publisher of many research works in Education.