Kateb Yacine's Intelligence Powder Analysis

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Kateb Yacine’s Intelligence Powder is a play that looks at post-colonial Algeria and how France affected it as their oppressor. In July 1962 Algeria achieved independence after a bitter war lasting over seven years. Some 300,000 Algerians died to win their nation's freedom. The war was fought brutally on both sides, but the need for a violent independence struggle was deeply rooted in the violence French imperialism had imposed on Algeria for over a century (Birchall, n.d.). The hero of Intelligence Powder is a person arranged by Kateb called Puff of smoke, a philosopher who lays bare the hypocrisy but especially the idiocy of the Mufti, Cadi and Sultan (representatives of religious and political public authorities) and even ordinary citizens. In a pleasant style, using simple words and resorting to stylistic, irony mainly through full sequences of strangeness when the ridiculous reminiscence of Kateb Yacine writings provides excellent insight of the Algerian society fifty years ago, whose intellectual level still…show more content…
The sultan and the mufti represent greed and the Cadi represents the false religion within Algeria. In this play we also see a free spirit, an elusive thinker opportunely called Puff of smoke, for all to be ridiculed. In this play in one act, mockery is their obscurantism and it is as unfathomable as the eternal collusion of interests between the powerful and the religious professionals: "The Sultan. [...] Only God can help us God preserves our people. God save our people eternal agitators. God forbid hard heads, philosophers, poets, orators, mad and scholars. " The idea that God has always been a great tool to calm the people in society and determine hope for a better life in all
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