Colonialism In The Weaver Bird

1084 Words5 Pages
European colonization in Africa affected the lives of several individuals such as losing their culture and religion as well as general freedom. Although the Europeans believed that they were “saving” Africa, the Africans had contrasting perspectives over the colonization over time and often expressed their opinions through stories or poems. Both “Africa” by David Diop and “The Weaver Bird” written by Kofi Awoonor are poems that portray the speaker's’ point of view of European colonization. They expresses their opinions through speaker tone, content and imagery, and finally the message. Even though these two authors display their impressions towards colonialisms, they have contrasting ideas and similarities which indicates that the colonialism…show more content…
The first speaker in Diop’s poem is an African who has never lived in Africa, but has only heard about Africa through his grandmother’s folk songs: “Africa of whom my grandmother sings.(3)” He conveys his feelings about the Europeans, using his knowledge and fundamentally helps describe his tone. The first speaker utilizes a grateful tone as he says: “Africa of proud warriors in ancestral savannahs.(2)” In other words, the speaker is expressing that he is proud to be an African and appreciating the African culture. Throughout the poem, the first speaker’s retains a bitter tone as he displeased with how the Europeans enslaved the Africans and questions the Africans submission to the Europeans. He is also saddened about the idea of slavery and expresses to the audience that he cannot tolerate the sight of backbreaking labour under the whip of slavery:Is this your back that is unbent / This back that never breaks under the weight of humiliation…show more content…
“The Weaver Bird” contains a speaker who also explains his attitude towards the European colonization with a few disparate views. As a matter of fact, his tone is bitter as he describes how the Europeans destroyed their way of life and diminished their culture: “We watched the building of the nest (4)” . His tone remains bitter throughout the poem, however, towards the end, the tone transitions to hope. The speaker explains how the Africans were determined not to lose their culture, but they were unable to prevent it: “We look for new homes every day / For new altars we strive to build (15-16)”. Adding more, the speaker implies that even though the Africans were foreigners in their own country, they are searching for new homes and seeking to rebuild their “Africa” and “The Weaver Bird” have numerous contrasting features that make the poem different to each other. Another difference between these two poems are who the speakers direct their opinions towards. In “Africa”, the first speaker is naive and only seems to be trying to grasp all the problems that are occurring in Africa. He expresses his understanding towards the audience as well as his
Open Document