Essay How Efua Sutherland Portrays Ananse in The Marriage of Anansewa

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Exploring the way Efua Sutherland portrays Ananse in The
Marriage of Anansewa, showing its significance in the play

Efua Sutherland’s hilarious and interesting play, The Marriage of
Anansewa, is a about a Ananse’s cunning arrangements for his
daughter’s marriage, at the same time, using the bride prices to turn
round his financial difficulties. I intend to explore how Efua T.
Sutherland portrays his character and its significance in the play.

Efua Sutherland first portrays Ananse as cunning and deceitful person
when he deceives his daughter into typing letters that she did not
know was for her own marriage in Act 1. We can note how Ananse
succeeds in convincing Anansewa in typing for him whiles she wants to
go out. He intentionally complains about the world and hardships in
life in order to make her feel sad and eventually agree to type. From
this, we can observe that one of tactics that he uses in cunning
people is by making people feel bad using psychological means to
remind his victims about undeniable difficulties that they are facing
and talking about the negative consequences. An example of this is how
he often asks Anansewa questions such as; “will your fees be paid by
the time you return home?” and “will the leaking ceiling be fixed by
the time you return?” Its significance to the play is that, it is the
first event that Sutherland uses to portray Ananse’s cunning and
deceitful character, so we are introduced to the kind of atmosphere we
are going to meet in the rest of the play.

Another act that Sutherland uses to portray Ananse’s character is when
he lies to his mother and aunt about the burning farm in order to
drive them away. She portrays Ananse’s character by showing how he
relates oth...

... middle of paper ...

... He can be seen as a
religious person who is cares about his reputation. This is seen in
act 1 when he asks Anansewa, “Will I be able to go to memorial
services this week in a fine cloth, next week in a suit or a different
cloth? Will I be able, if I go, to thrust my hand confidently into my
pocket in public and take out a five-guinea donation?”. We could see
that he would like to go to church if he had money but would rather
stay at home because he does not so that he is not seen as a poor man.

Personally, I think that Ananse is a character in the play, which
makes me like him. His cunning and deceitfulness is not intentional
done, but is forced to act as such because of the environment around
him. He creates the suspense in the story and makes the story
hilarious with his cunning. This play would not be memorable as it is
if he were not present in it.

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