Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy

Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy
Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy

ABSTRACT: This study is set out to analyze the issue of Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy. In Violence, the author pictures a society with two classes of people- the rich and poor, the oppressive forces fighting against the poor to submerge them in perpetual state of poverty and the poor masses, on becoming a way of these forces fight back to gain freedom.  In Mine Boy the author portrays the problems experienced by the Africans during apartheid regime. It portrays the struggles of African to attain equal right and to be treated as humans. In conclusion, the novels expose the social injustice and deprivations of the poor masses of their economic rights by the rich.

Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     Background to the study

The motivation for this research work centres on the fact that poverty and social injustice still exists in the present society. In the past and recent years, increasing attention has been given to poverty and social injustice by some activist movement. Poverty and social injustice have been walking hand in hand till this day for where there is poverty social injustice manifests and where there is social injustice poverty abounds. Therefore, some literary writers expose the increasing rate of poverty and social injustice through their literary works. They see art as not just a tool to explore beauty but to bring to light the ills going on in the society and also provide solutions to such.

The society tends to divide into two separate classes  the rich and the poor whose member have different access to resources and power, an economic rift exists between these two classes with the rich having access to wealth, good quality of life and maximum protection while the poor are denied these fundamental rights. There had been a gap dividing the rich and the poor and up until this day, no one is willing to close in the gap and merge these two classes of people, thus the gap grows wider each passing day.

Festus Iyayi and Peter Abraham use their literary work Violence and Mine Boy respectively to reveal the level of poverty and social injustice in the society. Poverty in these two texts is characterized by lack of minimum physical requirement for existence ad sustenance, example food, cloth and shelter. The rich dresses in beautiful apparel, lives in beautiful and comfortable house, eats enough and even have some thrown away while the poor dresses in rags lives in an uncomfortable place and have little or no food to eat. There is also low level of education, lack of infrastructure, poor health condition, unemployment, low investment, environmental degradation, overcrowded accommodation, low income and other problems associated with urban areas such as slums, ghettos and shanties. The poor are exposed to health hazard due to these environments they are made to live.

Social injustice is also mirrored in Festus Iyayi’s violence and Peter Abraham’s mine boy where the society operates on two laws the law that favours the rich and the law that disfavour the poor. In Peter Abraham’s mine boy, the whites are allowed to take alcoholic drinks while the blacks are arrested, beaten and detained if they are caught in possession of these drinks. This law also allows the rich to go unpunished for any offence committed while the poor is arrested and punished even if not guilty.

Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy

1.2     Statement of the Problem

The researcher examines the theme of poverty and social injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy because there is theme of inequality, oppression, exploitation and segregation in the novels under investigation.

1.3     Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this research work is to examine the effects of poverty and social injustice in the society and how literacy writers like Festus Iyayi and Peter Abraham have used literature as a tool to confront poverty and social injustice in the society that they live. The aim of this study is also to bring to the readers the importance of struggling to get out of poverty in a dignifying manner and not allowing the oppression and the exploitation of the rich to weigh them down.

1.4     Significance of the Study

This research work will be of great help to the students of English and literary studies, educators, other researchers and the society on how to eradicate poverty and social injustice in their various societies suffering oppression and deprivations.

1.5     Objectives of the Study

This study seeks to analyze the theme of poverty and social injustice in Festus Iyayi’s violence and Peters Abraham’s Mine Boy. Therefore, the objectives seek to;

  1. Bring to light poverty and social injustice as they exist in African society.
  2. Examine how African writers have been able to expose the activities that bring poverty and social injustice in their societies
  3. Suggest ways of getting rid of poverty and social injustice in African societies.

Poverty and Social Injustice in Festus Iyayi’s Violence and Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy

1.6     Research Methodology

The research design is library based and it will make use of Peter Abraham’s Mine Boy and Festus Iyayi’s Violence as the primary sources of data. There is also reliance on secondary materials like textbooks, journals and internet.

1.7     Scope and Limitation of the Study

The study is limited to discussing poverty and social injustice in the texts mentioned earlier. It will also make reference to the opinions or critics of other authors. No questionnaire is needed for this research work.

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