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Reconstructing Masculinity and Power in Africa through Open Distance Learning for Sustainable Development: A Critical Analysis of Wole Soyinka's "Climate of Fear".

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The strabismus conception of masculinity and power with its manipulation as reflected in the consequences of actions endorsed and demonstrated by leaders, followers, citizens as individuals and groups at different times in the past, and present has been a major source of the seemingly quiescence and underdevelopment in Africa. Masculinity has often been associated with being athletic, breadwinner, objective, sexually aggressive, unemotional, dominating, etc.; while power is frequently construed as a tool of dominance, authority, superiority, influence, and governance. This inapt perception was borne out of Africa's nictitating and ignorance. The consequences of the misconception include abuse of power, intolerance, intimidation, militancy, humiliation, insecurity, inadequate dialogic tools and opportunities, etc. These result in the "Climate of Fear" as being experienced in the Niger-Delta of Nigeria, Kenya, and other parts of Africa. Thus, this paper examines the concepts of masculinity and power with exemplification from Africa with Wole Soyinka's "Climate of Fear." The research methodology employs a combination of critical discourse analysis and Halliday's systemic functional theory of grammar with sociolinguistics approaches for the analysis. The study posits that the root of the problems that abound in Africa is traceable to the lack of precise socio-cultural, political and philosophical ideologies by Africans. The research opines that these fundamental problems of Africa can be resolved through orientation with education for all, which is one of the challenges of the millennium development goals. Thus, the paper examines the contrivance of open distance learning and its role in the education of African citizenry. It concludes on the ground that open distance learning as a recent and welcomed information technological development in Africa, if properly channeled and adequately funded would enhance sustainable development in Africa by its elimination of some of the aforementioned obstacles. (Contains 1 table.

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Author:Adetunji, Barihi; Adesida, Aderonke Adetunji
Publication:ERIC: Reports
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:60AFR
Date:Aug 1, 2009
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