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European form. Before the 60's you had what was called traditional drama, a kind of folk drama.
And even though Shiyenka wrote in the 60's,
the excerpt you heard from the trials of the mighty Gerald depict Gerald praying in a folk dialect
and the dialect is a major characteristic of folk drama.
Most folk drama is not written and um I think Shiyenka does something unusual in the trials of the mighty Gerald.
But on the other hand, after the 60's two forms of drama appeared,
popular drama of- aimed at the masses of uneducated people
and literary drama geared for the educated audience.
Both popular and literary drama are usually written, but more specifically literary drama is written.
Sometimes popular drama is not written.
Since African English drama was so late in getting off the ground, so to say,
and since drama, the more Classical or European form is so complex to write,
you really do not have an abundance of African English playwrights.
I mention the Classical or European concept of drama
because if the African English play right was not writing in this vein,
it was often very difficult for the writer to get the play published.
And if the play was not published, then the critics couldn't evaluate it.
And if the critics could not evaluate the play,
then it was almost impossible for the writer to get any kind of recognition at all.
And thus, as a result of these circumstances,
only a few outstanding African English playwrights have appeared.
The most- foremost African English playwright without a doubt is Wollay Shiyenka of Nigeria
and you heard the short excerpt from his play the trial of the mighty Gerald.
Now now I won't dwell too heavily on Shiyenka's work
because you'll hear a great deal about him in the next literary corner program.
But, I do want familiarize you with another Nigerian playwright, John Pepper Clark.

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