Volume 4, Issue 3, September 2019, Page: 61-69
Exploring the Paradigmatic Thinking and Representation in R. E. Obeng’s Eighteenpence: Beyond Plot
Casimir Adjoe, Department of Communication Studies and Languages, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Central University, Tema, Ghana
Received: May 22, 2019;       Accepted: Jul. 10, 2019;       Published: Jul. 23, 2019
DOI: 10.11648/j.ellc.20190403.11      View  41      Downloads  8
Abstract
When narratives are mentioned, the first thing that springs to mind is plot. Plot is important because of its reference to development and process, which make possible the outlining and enacting of the forms of life that shape up around a particular time and structure. Meaning-making in a narrative is generally dependent on this arrangement and the forms of life it creates from it. Nonetheless, in producing meaning, plot is not the only way of designing a narrative. One other significant way of structuring or designing narratives and creating meaning in narratives is through a pattern: juxtapositioning, parallelism and contrasts. In these meaning making processes of either plot or pattern, time is significant. Plot depends upon a linear sequential process implicating process and development and therefore a beginning, a middle and an end, or time in progression, whereas pattern depends upon time that is held static in a paradigmatic structure of an eternal present, conflating past, present and future. Pattern can occur at the level of words, but also at the level of phrases and sentences (stylistics), or at the level of scenes, chapters, and in parts or divisions. The most essential thing to recognize about all this, however, is that the pursuit and crucial aspect of a narrative is that it seeks to create its own world through the process of packaging what it is creating through a design. The underlying principle of this packaging is ‘tying together’. Hence narratives tie together people, objects and facts. And they tie them together in a manner that is stylistically and grammatically acceptable. By tying together objects and facts, and tying people together, and by doing so through stylistic and grammatical means, the argument of the narrative is conveyed at a more implicit level than through an explicit level such as for plot; that is, through the very textual organization of accounts. Using R. E. Obeng’s Eighteenpence as example, this paper investigates the significance and effectiveness of creating consequence and meaning through the design patterns of juxtapositioning, parallelism and contrast for narratives which foreground the textual and structural organization of accounts to convey their meaning and arguments. Obeng’s Eighteenpence is the first full-length Ghanaian novel (1967), preceding Ayi Kwei Armah’s The Beautiful Ones Are Not Yet Born (1968).
Keywords
Contrasts, Beyond Plot, Enlightenment Frameworks, Paradigmatic Thinking and Representation, Pattern, Romantic Frameworks
To cite this article
Casimir Adjoe, Exploring the Paradigmatic Thinking and Representation in R. E. Obeng’s Eighteenpence: Beyond Plot, English Language, Literature & Culture. Vol. 4, No. 3, 2019, pp. 61-69. doi: 10.11648/j.ellc.20190403.11
Copyright
Copyright © 2019 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Reference
[1]
Angmor, C. (1996). Contemporary Literature in Ghana 1911-1978: A Critical Evaluation. Accra: Woeli Publishing Services.
[2]
Abbott, P. H. (2007). “Story, Plot, and Narration”. In Herman, David (ed.). The Cambridge Companion of Narrative. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[3]
Herman, David (ed), 2007, The Cambridge Companion to Narrative, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[4]
Dibell, A., Scott Card and Turco. (1990). How to Write a Million: The Complete guide to becoming a successful author. London: Robinson Publishing Ltd.
[5]
Dako, K. (Ed.). (1998). R. E. Obeng. Eighteenpence. Accra: Sub-Saharan Publishers.
[6]
Boles, P. D. (1984) Storycrafting, Writer’s Digest Books.
[7]
Newell, S. (2000). Ghanaian Popular Fiction: ‘Thrilling Discoveries in Conjugal Life’. Oxford and Ohio: James Currey and Ohio UP.
[8]
Dako, K. (1999). Gender roles as indicators of social change in a colonial novel: R. E. Obeng’s Eighteenpence as socio-historical source material. IAS Research Review. New Series Vol 15 nos. 1. 1999: 60-79.
[9]
Dako, K. (1994) “R. E. Obeng’s Eighteenpence: A Critical Review”. Journal of Black Studies. Vol.
[10]
Neusner, J. & Bruce Chilton (1997). The Intellectual Foundations of Christian and Jewish Discourse: The Philosophy of Religious Argument. London and New York: Routledge.
[11]
Dako, K. & Helen Yitah. (2012). “Pidgin, ‘broken’ English and othering in Ghanaian literature”. Legon Journal of the Humanities: Special Edition of Papers from the SPCL Conference 2011. 202-230.
[12]
Scholes, R. (1968). Elements of Fiction. London and Toronto: Oxford University Press.
[13]
Orson Scott (1995). How to write a million: The complete guide to becoming a successful author. London: Robinson Publishing Ltd.
[14]
Barry, P. (2002). Beginning Theory: An Introduction to Literary and Cultural Theory. Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press.
[15]
Newell, S. (2002). Literary Culture in Colonial Ghana. Manchester and Indiana: Manchester UP and Indiana UP.
Browse journals by subject