A renowned linguist and book critic, Dr. Joshua Agbo, has commended the author of the literature titled ‘Osmosis’, Mr. Iyua Williams Iorakpen, for the painstaking effort in exposing one of the critical ills of the society and making it look real and captivating in suspending readers interest.
Making this assertion known in his critique of the book, Dr. Agbo, observed that the message conveyed by the author took into cognisance the everyday life of some people in our day-to-day environment not leaving out the memories of their good, bad and ugly moments in driving home the lessons to be learnt.
The Critique, Dr. Agbo, a Senior lecturer at the Department of Languages and Linguistics, Benue state University, Makurdi, said the creativity in the writer can be seen in his language simplicity, exposures, unbiased mind and human affection as he ensures the moods were captured with feelings of moral values and good conscience.
According to him; “Throughout history, and in all ages, human beings have been driven by the quest for two basic ideals: society and freedom. These ideals co-exist side by side. We value our individuality, we value our self-reliance―peace of mind―yet we utterly depend on the society for our most fundamental needs”.
“In this thought-provoking and intricately crafted play, Osmosis, Iyua Williams Iorakpen explores the tensions that lie at the heart of what it means to be human, as well as the primary desire that defines us”.
“Osmosis, as a contemporary drama of trauma with an exclusive autonomy to select its own audience based on its message, ultimately, or sadly, selects all of us―you and me―either as a participant, witness or arbiter, and gets us weeping, sobbing, crying for, and sympathizing with the child-victims of sexual abuse, as the play itself points out the misfit’s “origin-story” in a deeply disturbing society”.
“The re-telling of the story is Iyua’s role as a playwright, but the story is ours and we should read it as a screen through which we can see ourselves, because it contains everything we crave so deeply: truth, soul, freedom, peace, and grace. The story gets us closer to the truth and the truth gets us closer to a better world”.
“Osmosis, published by the Exceller Books Press in Belgharia, India, 2020, consists of eleven characters with fifty three pages. Unlike the traditional plays written in the Senecan style of act- and-scene segmentation, Osmosis, written not in defiance to this traditionally classic style, is instead compartmentalised into in “Happening 1, Happening 2, Happening 2, and etcetera, to mark a new form of contemporary style of African drama”.
“It is not, in my own eyes, a violation of the old theatrical conventions, but a creative innovation or experimentation of modern play-writing. Further, as an insight into the thematic overlay, the play is foreworded by Shedrach Fanan Agyaku, who first tells us that the play is about: “The nature of humans as sexual beings…” and by dint of this sharp perspicacity, we are immediately introduced to what the play is about―abuse”.
“For example, Onome, the protagonist of the play embodies pedophilia, and incest as demonstrated in Happening I―Alero, his wife, describes him as a “…beast[!] “Give me my child, what the hell were you doing [,] using my daughter to masturbate or what? Can you ever be satisfied? You pedophile”! It is a portrayal of a man who never satisfied sexually, and morally debased to an extent of abusing his own child”.
“As if abusing one’s own daughter was not a grave-enough-crime―Onome, a sex maniac goes on in Happening 2 to lure Osareti into sex and so he has this to say: “You don’t need to be in such a rush. I have told you that she would be back soon. Osareti, do you know that of all the members of your family [,] you are the most beautiful? I get lost in a trance each time I see you”.
The playwright exposes the true burden of child sex abuse through the lens of an arbiter. Child abuse is a serious and devastating problem not just in Africa, but the world over―it is a transgression which cuts across all religions, creeds, cultures, and traditions”.
“However, the number of children on the continent who are abused has always been underestimated. Child abuse, for instance, is deﬁned by the WHO as “all forms of physical and emotional ill-treatment, sexual abuse, neglect and exploitation that result in actual or potential harm to the child’s health, development or dignity”.
In his critical analysis of the objective, market and demographic focus of the publication as well as target audiences, Mr. Shadrach Fanan Agyaku; a lecturer at the Benue State University, Department of Thearter Arts, Makurdi, expressed optimism in the book making the desired impact on the society”.
Said he; “I am pleased to have the opportunity to critique Iyua Williams Iorakpen’s work. As an editor and fellow writer, I want to say I am very much touched by this creative write up and I am convinced that this creative work will bring about the desired change intended”.
“Osmosis paints a graphic picture of recent development in sexual behaviour of human beings in various cosmic envelopes”, been it United States, Nigeria, Britain, China or elsewhere. Thereby the production of Osmosis would thus, be relevant both literarily and theatrically in almost all parts of the universe if not all”.
“This therefore, is to say that the writer is quite consistent in the development of his thematic pre-occupation which also coheres the sequence of the play”.
“On a final analysis, Osmosis is a good play, with good thematic concern, a consistent and committed plot, a powerfully United Plot which yet would have demanded a better resolution. Personally, I wouldn’t wait to have a published copy in my library”, he stated.
The author, Iyua Williams Iorakpen was born to the family of Iorakpen Mayange Gyanden from Mbagba–Ukan, Ushongo Local Government of Benue State. He read for a Degree in English Language and Literature at the University of Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria. Iorakpen is an excellent actor, drama director and gifted playwright.
His published works include: Echoes of the Heart (a play; which turned out to be the first literary text written on the Kanuri culture of Borno); Still in the Void (a play), And So It Came to Pass (a biographical play on his mother); Osmosis (a play) and Waiting and Laying Blames (Poetry), Sometime in Zakybiam (a play), And Revolution Begins (a play), and Network News (a play), and So long (a play).
In 2008, shortly after his National Youth Service, Williams Iorakpen started his Publishing Outfit known as Afriwhood Publications and Productions; a label under which he published most of his books and promoted their productions. He is a writer of many parts and currently as of today, a captain with the Nigeria Army.
Osmosis publishers, #ExcellerBooks said the book whose main purpose was to create social awareness against sexual abnormalities can be subscribed online on these platforms;
Amazon Kindle: https://amzn.to/30I2Ij9
Google Play: https://rb.gy/kgmjk7