ACHIEVING UNITY AND COHERENCE THROUGH CONTRADICTIONS IN THE NOVELS OF ACHEBE, IYAYI AND HABILA
This study attempts an exploration of how unity and coherence through contradictions are achieved in Achebe‟s Things Fall Apart, Iyayi‟s Violence and Habila‟s Measuring Time. It is significant to state that the choice of these texts is informed by the need to comprehend how various generations of Nigerian writers have negotiated the contradictions, tensions, distortions and challenges, which have characterized the social, historical and political landscape of Nigeria.
In addition, this study reflects the many dimensions of contradictions, distortions, tensions, injustice and disillusionment prevailing in the selected texts. It touches on character juxtaposition, comparative analysis, differences and interrelationships among structures in the texts. It however achieves unity and coherence by showing the connection of representations in the texts. For instance, Achebe‟sThings Fall Apart projects unity and coherence of the African culture as well as Western religion through distortions and tensions evident in the text.
The writer‟s skilful portrayal of the two cultures, co-existing side by side, is one of such structuralists binarism achieved in this study. Iyayi explores unity and coherence by pointing out the insensitive nature of the government. He encourages the masses to unite in the struggle towards a desirable and functional social order in the country. Habila‟s Measuring Time depicts family disunity and its effect on the individual character.
He achieves unity and coherence in the text, emphasizing on individual contributions towards the unity and development in the community. Structuralism as a reading method is appropriate. This is in relation to its distinctive features of binary oppositions, the primacy of the text and the generation of meaning through differences, etc.
The deployment of these features enhances the understanding of the contradictions, distortions and tensions predominant in the texts. The study therefore establishes that in spite of these contradictions, complexities, disintegrations and distortions the texts display some levels of unity and coherence towards a desirable functional society.