Received Date: 10 August 2023 | Accepted Date: 03 October 2023 | Published Date: 30 October 2023
Author: Kelvin Chibenumoso Opara
Keywords: society, Playwright, social problems, social justice.
Playwrights play a pivotal role in championing equal justice within society. Through the dynamic medium of drama, they address pressing social issues and work towards catalyzing positive societal change. This qualitative study examines the playwright's role in advocating for social justice in Nigeria using Femi Osofisan's Once Upon Four Robbers with a Marxist theoretical framework. The research unveils the moral ambiguity surrounding the government-sponsored military execution of the armed robbery gang leader. It contends that this action lacks justification, given that these individuals turned to crime due to the government's failure to provide opportunities for the youth, raising questions about the government's legitimacy in administering justice while perpetuating conditions of injustice. In response, the study recommends that in societies riddled with social injustice, playwrights must diligently fulfil their role as social commentators, fostering positive change for the greater good. It stresses that playwrights should not compromise their societal responsibilities but instead advocate for constructive reforms and offer solutions to prevailing societal challenges. This can only be achieved when writers fully recognize their roles as change agents in society. This research therefore underscores the vital role of playwrights in advocating for social justice, especially in contexts where systemic issues threaten equality and fairness.
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