"Telephone Conversation" is a racist satire written by Nigerian writer Wole Soyinka in 1963. The poem is about a phone call about renting an apartment between a landlady and the speaker, who is black. It was published in Soyinka's collection of poems, A Kind of Self-Destruction.
The poem first appeared in English in Soyinka's book. However, it had already been translated into several other languages. These translations vary somewhat from version to version but can be divided into two groups: those that were not published with a translation of their own (France, German), and those that were published together with a translation by the same translator (Spanish, Italian).
Soyinka wrote "Telephone Conversation" as a response to Chester Himes' novel, If He Hollers Let Him Go! In this novel, two black men talk on the phone about finding an apartment. However, when they get to the point where they are supposed to sign the lease, they find out that the landlord is white and they hang up on each other.
Soyinka's poem takes place over one night and consists of three parts: introduction, dialogue and conclusion.
"Telephone Conversation" is a poem written in English by Wole Soyinka, a well-known African writer. The poem reveals the persistence of racial prejudice at the individual level in society, despite the passage of anti-discrimination legislation. The poem is based on a phone conversation between a white woman and a black man. The woman accuses the man of stealing her wallet, while he denies having done so. However, when she does not hang up, he tells her about his life, including how he was expelled from school for fighting back against racist teachers. She seems to believe him until the end, when he confesses, just before hanging up.
This poem is one of those that cannot be easily answered. It requires deep thought to understand what the author intends to convey through this work of art. However, some elements can help us guess the message behind the poem: racism, discrimination, injustice, self-esteem - all topics that concern Africa, where Soyinka lives and works. Indeed, "The Telephone Conversation" deals with these issues specifically through the eyes of a black man who sees himself as less than human because of his race.
Soyinka was born on March 20th, 1933 in Abeokuta, Nigeria. He studied literature and philosophy at Yale University and received a PhD in Literature from Harvard University in 1973. In addition to being a writer, he has been a politician, a university professor, and even the President of Nigeria! He currently lives in America.
Wole Soyinka's "Telephone Conversation" is a free verse lyric poetry. The poem is a conversation between a black guy and a white woman. Throughout the poem, the two are preoccupied with a phone conversation. They discuss many issues such as racism, prejudice, discrimination, and slavery.
Here are some of the topics they talk about:
Racism: The black man tells the woman that she is a racist because she uses the word "nigger". She says that he is wrong because blacks have been slaves for so long that they use the word as an insult. He argues that this is not true because racists would never call themselves racists. She says that he is only trying to justify his race's oppression. He ends the conversation by saying goodbye.
Prejudice: The woman is prejudiced against black men because all black men are criminals who just look good on television. She says that there are plenty of white men who are criminals too but they aren't portrayed that way. He agrees but adds that it is harder for white men to get work done because most jobs are owned by black men.
Slaves: Both parties know that this conversation won't last very long because there is no point in discussing issues that can't be resolved.
Wole Soyinka's poem "Telephone Conversation," written in the first person narrative point of view, is a literary satire on the widespread racism in current Western culture. The poem also serves as a testimonial to the power of communication technology to unite people from different parts of the world.
The poem begins with a description of a modern-day telephone exchange, where voices are converted into electrical signals and transmitted over long distances via lines. It continues by comparing this activity to face-to-face conversations between individuals, noting that "people are connected by phones".
This passage makes it clear that the point of view of the poem is first-person singular, or "I." The speaker is an African man who has just arrived at a new country and is trying to make sense of what has happened to him. He calls his family back home using information provided by a map that he finds in the phone booth. After talking with them for several minutes, he realizes that they do not know anything about his situation, so he hangs up without explaining himself further.
In conclusion, "Telephone Conversation" shows that people from different parts of the world can still connect with one another even though they are thousands of miles apart.
Wole Soyinka's Essay on a Telephone Conversation 5 pages / 1009 words Wole Soyinka's "The Telephone Conversation" Wole Soyinka's poetry "Telephone Conversation" has a very casual and straightforward title. The title of the poem informs the reader that what they are about to read is realistic and free-flowing. It also tells them that the topic will be about a phone call, which would seem to limit the subject matter. However, upon reading the poem itself, we find out that it is actually more of a speech than a call; therefore, limiting its scope even further. In conclusion, the title of the poem is quite accurate in representing what the reader can expect from this work.
Wole Soyinka's Telephone Conversation Summary Wole Soyinka's "Telephone Conversation," written in first-person narrative style, deals with the topic of racism, a fully irritating human trait that can be observed lurking within the thoughts of numerous persons. The story follows a phone call Soyinka receives from an unknown caller who accuses him of being a spy for the British government and warns him to stop writing about Nigeria at this time when it needs peace most.
Soyinka responds by saying he is not a spy but simply trying to get information about conditions in Nigeria. He goes on to say that even though he is a writer, he is not the only one who wants to know what is happening in his country. There are many Nigerians who are interested in finding out more about their nation's politics and economy. This fact alone proves that there is no need for anyone to be a spy when so much interest is displayed in one's country.
When the caller hears Soyinka is not a spy but just a writer, he seems to accept this as truth and ends the conversation.