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Published: 19-10-2019

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Ayi Kwei Armah's Novel The Healer Tackles issues of Traditions, Life and Values

Theodore Roosevelt once stated that “In any moment of selection, the very best factor you can do is the appropriate issue. The worst point you can do is nothing at all.” Typically, illusions of comfort blockade the thoughts and sway an individual’s capability to clearly see the moral path that should be taken. In the novel The Healers, Ayi Kwei Armah presents readers with a moral dilemma that will either unite or destroy the Asante empire. Densu, the protagonist all through the story, is forced to choose in between two worlds. A single world will potentially exterminate the Asante empire because of greed and power, and the other globe will slowly heal the empire with patience and inspiration. Densu is faced against these two driving forces Ababio, his evil and manipulative guardian, and his inclination to reside basically as a Healer. Throughout this novel, Armah accentuates how traditions, values, and life can not be conceded or mediated by means of his continuous examples of how greed, fraud, and deceit can destroy and divide a community.

Armah offers us with an animated tale with a basic, but complex plot about manipulation versus inspiration, imagination versus destruction, and unity versus disunity. Vital changes occurred during this time period due to the colonization of Britain in Ghana and the normal fighting amongst the Asante, the Fanti and the Assen empire. Armah regularly hints throughout the story that the destruction of the 19th century African community lies inside their inability to be able to recognize the whites invading force for what it was greed and deceitfulness. Densu’s guardian, Ababio, is a driving force behind the manipulation and the destruction within the Asante society. Ababio, who desires for material goods rather than the all round wellness of his neighborhood, seeks to destroy Densu after he declined to adhere to the courts manipulative rule over the Asante empire. Ababio states, “We shall be on the side of the whites. That is where the energy lies. We have chosen energy since we locate impotence disgusting.” Densu, who is a young, reflective leader in the Asante empire, have to decide on between two simple paths fall to his guardian’s evil ploys or join a reflective group called “The Healers.” Preferring the function of the ascetic Healers rather than the manipulative world of the Royalty, Densu have to overcome Ababio and the Royalty in order to unify his community. Armah utilizes Ababio to portray good versus evil throughout the novel. Densu constantly chooses to pursue the the path of inspiration and healing because they market the unity of the physique, of the thoughts, and of the society. Armah demonstrates the power of enlightenment by way of Densu to accentuate the influence of inspiration more than manipulation.

Armah demonstrates all through the novel the importance of unity and life within a community by giving numerous examples of how disunity and death have divided the Asante empire. Though Densu has the opportunity to turn into the subsequent elected crowned king, he compassionately chooses to continue his life as a Healer. Densu understands the significance of life when he affectionately chose not to kill the tethered bird in the final contest of the festival season games. By deciding on to not kill the bird, Densu displayed how these games are a representation of division and disunity inside his community simply because of the strong emphasis that the games have on individual competitors. Simply because of Densu’s actions, Armah displays that unity can not be achieved by employing force and manipulation. Alternatively, Armah expresses the society’s want for the reflective neighborhood known as the Healers. The Healers fantastic objective is to unify not only their community, but black folks as a whole. Armah persistently reaches out to the African community and emphasizes that very good factors take time. Armah constantly calls the African neighborhood to take action and to voice their issues when greed and division arise. Armah provides the audience with the reflective neighborhood known as the Healers in order to inspire the men and women of African decent to defend what is actually important to themselves and inside their society: unity and patience.

Densu’s mentor, Damfo, is the leader of the reflective community that calls themselves the Healers. Damfo is a good driving force for Densu and since of this, Densu is capable to discern which path is morally proper. Damfo explains to Densu that it is achievable to view the globe and its experiences by means of understanding rather than greed and deceitfulness. Damfo assists men and women in seeing, hearing, and being aware of themselves so that the person may possibly comprehend and act really. Armah constantly reminds his audience the value of tradition, values, and life by providing his audience a character like Damfo, who strives for unity and wholeness within his community. Damfo and his community of the Healers are against the colonization of Britain since many of the traditions and values that the Asante Empire believes to be correct are consistently being compromised and invaded by new religious beliefs and ideologies. Due to the fact of these new religious beliefs and ideologies, Armah believes that the African community is dividing and is fragmented. Armah argues that the African community is fragmented and segregated because the disunity between the Healers and the royalty has prevailed because of the colonization of the British. Armah demonstrates his beliefs by giving examples of how the British are the sole cause for the initial division in Africa. Armah continuously demonstrates that the general recovery in Africa to unity, patience, and health will test the limits of time if men and women continue to enable greed, self-interest, and corrupt ideologies and folks to rule Africa that continually market separation and division. Slavery, which is an idea frequently associated to the cause and kickoff of a segregated world, encouraged the disrespect to human life. Because of the impact slavery had on the Asante empire, it negatively influenced the individuals of Asante by encouraging an environment that glorified death and violence. Ababio, who encouraged the whites to invade and enslave the folks of their tribe, states “If you didn’t know it just before know it now. Each and every royal loved ones is also a slave household. The two go collectively. You don’t get kings without having slaves. You do not get slaves without having kings.” Armah persistently demonstrates how the disrespect of human life has a direct correlation to the division of Africa. Due to the fact of this division, Armah calls for a society without kings and slaves. Through the Healers, he hopes to inspire and unify Africa when once again by way of a society founded on respect in between Africa’s people.

Armah accentuates the severity of life by employing Asamoa Nkwanta, who is apart of the royal family, as a unique challenge for Damfo. Because of fragmentation and disunity in his community, Damfo, who believes the royals are corrupt exploiters, is skeptical about his choice to heal Asamoa Nkwanta simply because of his association with the royal household. Damfo’s capability to aid Asamoa Nkwanta recognize and query the corrupt practices of the society makes it possible for for Damfo to come closer in assisting achieve the ambitions of the Healers. Damfo explains the Healers targets by stating, “This is seed time, far from harvest time. Healing is perform, not gambling […] If we healers are here to do the perform of assisting to bring our folks together once again, we need to know such work is the operate of the neighborhood.” Once Asomoa Nkwanta was healed in his thoughts and his attitude, he recognized flaws all through the Asante society the holding of slaves and the sacrificial slaying of slaves are Asante practices which are disrespectful of human life. Simply because of Asomoa Nkwanta’s decision to follow the healers and recognize the faults in the Asante society, the royal family members betrays him. Armah demonstrates how the rulers in Asante society, for whom the welfare of the society should be dominant, become lost and destructive in their greed for energy. Armah continuously gives examples of how this greed and want for power are the important provoking difficulties that are major to the division of the Asante empire.

In this novel, evil and greed can typically prevail in the brief term and hold the Asante society hostage. In hopes to free the Asante society of evil and greed, the healers main technique of healing is inspiration and patience. By employing the healers as a method of inspiration to his audience, Armah ultimately calls the neighborhood and individuals of African decent to lead persistently and diligently whilst aiming to have a healthier and productive society. Armah constantly prompts his audience to remember the value of traditions, values, and human life by way of an animated tale about a divided neighborhood.

Ayi Kwei Armah eloquently weaves with each other not only a story of division, but also a lesson of patience and respect. Making use of stunning, but simplistic language, Armah captures the conflict amongst people and massive-scale groups by offering examples of men and women who are scattered in the mind and geographically. Ayi Kwei Armah exposes the trigger of division in Africa: self-importance, greed for energy, and deceit. It was through these causes that permitted Armah to communicate the value of life, traditions, values, and patience.

Function CitedArmah, Ayi Kwei. Healers, The. Nairobi: East African Home, 1978. Print.
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