MORE CRITIQUES AND COMMENTS ABOUT “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” FOR WAEC/NECO EXAMS (35)

MORE CRITIQUES AND COMMENTS ABOUT “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” FOR WAEC/NECO EXAMS (35)

“A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” BY ASARE KONADU” (WAEC/NECO LIT EXAM)

CRITIQUE 4

36.For my class on tuesday, i just finished reading Asare Konadu’s remarkable book, A WOMAN IN HER PRIME. And i thought about it and decided to share my note with West African literature students who have to study this book if they intend to pass their O’ level literature in English exam, and for other book lovers like me.The novel, which was written by Ghanaian author Konadu(i think he died in 1994) in the 60’s is number 40 in the African Writers’ Series.37.The story is about a middle-aged woman, Pokuwaa who has been unable to bear a child.38.Pokuwaa is a feminist figure who gracefully rejects subjugation of any sort in a society that demanded a child from her. She has a mother whose paranoia over her daughter’s plight causes her to subject her daughter to different rituals and sacrificial offerings and ceremonies.39.Pokuwaa’s bears the ridicules of her society in good stride. I think it has something to do with the matriarchal Ashanti culture but Pokuwaa’s role of family head is carried out in a way that may frighten most men. She is a hardworker who knows her way around a farm. She is ‘rich’ as she tells her husband Kwadwo jokingly when the latter sees her counting cowries and says, ‘is that to show me how rich you are?’ to which she answers gaily, ‘don’t you know? I was rich even when i was ten years old’ and tells the story of her childhood when the old chief showered her with gifts.40.She has been married twice before and divorced her husbands because of her barrenness(another feminist response by Konadu, because one would have thought it the other way round). Her current husband, Kwadwo, is sore afraid that the same fate will befall him so he makes extra effort to please her.41.Pokuwaa exudes strength, she loves her husband and it shows even though her longing for a child hangs like a dark cloud over their happiness sometimes. Her strength is evident in her resolution to give up the sacrifices and rites to appease the god, Tano to conceive. We also see her breaking the news to her mother amid the old lady’s tantrums of witchcraft.42.Her concealment of the pregnancy when it finally comes, until the third month to avoid raising the hopes of her loved ones if she turned out not being pregnant after all.43.Her husband’s love supports her, for Kwadwo is a good man and his patience is rewarded when Pokuwaa conceives. He is simply overjoyed at the news:
He took off her cloth himself and gazed at her figure in astonishment… ‘cover yourself, beautiful one’… While Pokuwaa was doing so, she heard him sobbing… She rushed to sit beside him on the bed where he was crying like a baby…44.Asare Konadu’s preoccupation in this fine novel is an iconoclastic dethronement of the superstition of that era, presenting a woman whose worth is measured, not by her child-bearing prowess but by her qualities as a human being.45.The entire 107 pages of this novel fascinated me because in Pokuwaa, i saw the new generation of the African woman who has emerged out of darkness, above the shackles of societal expectations to true freedom, without on such things as child- bearing to confirm her womanhood.

46.Interestingly, like our Pokuwaa, most of these women have also been blessed with children because they want the joy of motherhood for it’s own sake.

I hope my students grasp this knowledge irrespective of their culture or sex and that it will tickle the creative nerves in them and take them on a journey of the African experience.

By African Priestess
 
CRITIQUE 5
African writers are branded of peculiar writing styles which enthuse many people to make their tale first choice. Asare Konedu is a novelist from Ghana. He has premeditated ” A woman in her prime” not for fun but for an exclusive description of African culture without ignoring the value and practices of the people of Ghana more than ever those in the Ashanti land. I may say there are pro writers in Nigeria and some other part of Africa.Konadu, clearly exposes the believe and practices of the people of Ghana with regard to marriage, funeral celebration and traditional festivals in this novel. He designates Pokuwaa the leading character and her role played has really given a vivid picture and beauty of the story. We were informed that Pokuwaa could not sustain marriage in view of her childless.  She experiences two different marriages with the unproductive problem. Kwadwo Fordwuo could be a real husband for Pokuwaa, but they met lately. He deliberately understands her situations and always feels with her. “There may be a time for every situation. Nevertheless no situation is permanent.” He contemplates.  Pokuwaa demonstrates a habit of hard work and she is known as an industrious house wife who always goes to the nearest stream to fetch water to feed the family.Pokuwaa is an ambitious woman whose target is always visualized with subsequent events. We discovered her excessive ambition during the Friday sacrifice for the great god Tano. She is nothing but animated all day long waiting patiently for the ceremony to come on. Brenhoma is the setting of the story. A farming community where traditional religion is mostly prevalent. We recognize lack of formal education among the people of this community. They guess their time by associating it to the rotation of the globe in connection with the position of the sun. Though there are tons of items people give during the great Tano sacrifice, Pokuwaa visualizes a dark hen for her contribution. Meanwhile, the problems she confronts among many others which involve a snake to gulp down the black hen, and her tactic skill to pin down the snake are some of the adventures she experiences.Pokuwaa goes through a broad range of sacrifices with the view to recuperating her barrenness, but all these efforts are always in vain. Some of the medicine men deliberately mislead her and turn to give frivolous solutions as result of an irregularity and an improper measure of using the medicine.  Her mother is highly concerned about her child-birth so as her advice and consolidations are always enforced. She has a compassionate friend, Koramoa whose companion is significant to Pokuwaa in diverse social ways.
Konadu describes Pokuwaa as one the industrious female farmers in Brenhoma. This really portrays African culture where women endure deadly farming work. No sooner had she discovered dead body near her farm and failed to show the news to the people of the town, except her trusted mother than she felt discomfort and nostalgia till the burial of the deceased Yaw Boakye. Even though the husband was amazed and suspected her of  having a compassionate relationship with the deceased, she was competent enough to reply him without impressive upon the deceased. We hardly witness this meticulous behavior among women of Arica. On this note, her character displayed is highly recommended in this novel.Konadu depictes the character of Pokuwaa as one of the women with high esteemed in Brenhoma community. She is optimistic that God is the only initiator of a child and not the great god Tano. She rejected all the encouragement received from the mother and the husband with connection to spiritual sacrifices. We sense from this performance that Pokuwaa is not naturally inspired by traditional practices. She may demonstrate an utmost interest in praising the supreme Almighty God than these lesser gods in Brenhoma.We were informed in the novel that Pokuwaa terror dead bodies awfully. She prefer sitting beside her mother when that benevolent chief who reigned for fifty years died. The chief has been nice to Koramoa, her best friend in many standpoints. She describes him as the only chief who shares food as well as so many other things with their families. We understand that the chiefs in Ghana are of great celebrity that they often receive gifts from their disciples. I ever saw one dressing in splendid Kentey cloth in Koforidua.No one dare blame the supreme God. Pokuwaa shows sign of pregnancy within a few months after she boycotts the sacrifices of the great god Tago. She has even forgotten about her barrenness. Her husband Kwadwo doesn’t bother much about the sudden change of her mind and they live happier than before. He is a great hunter so as he brings bush meat home to impress his wife. Her mother, the old woman becomes happy with the sign that her daughter has finally become pregnant.  Her best friend Koramoa was full of joy while the husband, Kwadwo keeps his ears to the ground with shock. Good wishers contribute their mature compliments and advice. We were inspired by Maame Fosua’s information; we are informed that when a woman is pregnant she needs to eat more of palm nut soup and chew sugarcane which in turn gives breast milk in abundance.   No sooner did you read “A woman in her prime” than you understood the real culture of the people of Ghana.
 
 
0THER COMMENTS
THE STORY
THE STORY IS ABOUT HOW A YOUNG WOMAN MAKES THAT ALL-IMPORTANT RITE OF PASSAGE FROM ADOLESCENCE INTO ADULTHOOD. HOWEVER, HER EARLY ADULT LIFE IS MARRED BY CHILDLESSNESS IN A SOCIETY THAT PLACES A GREAT PREMIUM ON CHILDREN AND MOTHERHOOD AS THE ULTIMATE MARK OF WOMANHOOD.
THE THEME 
ONE OF THE CENTRAL THEMES IN ASARE KONADU’S NOVEL IS THE THEME OF PREDESTINATION OR FATE.THAT IS THE SUPREMACY OF THE GODS OVER MORTALS.WHATEVER THE GODS HAVE WILLED OR DESTINED MUST HAPPEN AND HUMAN BEINGS ARE POWERLESS IN STOPPING OR AVERTING ANY TRAGEDY WHICH HAS BEEN LAID DOWN BY THE GODS.NOBODY DARE CHALLENGE THE DECISIONS OF THE GODS.IN FACT,NOTHING OF IMPORTANCE IS EVER UNDERTAKEN WITHOUT STRICT ADHERENCE TO THE WISHES AND ASPIRATIONS OF THE GODS.
MISCELLANEOUS
a.THIS BOOK  TEACHES SOME MORAL BEHAVIOR AND POINTS OUT THAT TRUST IN SMALL GODS ARE IRRELEVANT .IT SHOWS THE INNERMOST PAINS OF BARRENNESS IN MARRIAGE.MARRIAGE AND CHILDBEARING GOES HAND IN HAND IN AFRICAN SOCIETIES. ASARE KONADU USED A WOMAN WHO WAS BARREN  TO PORTRAY THIS VIEW CLEARLY.THE SOCIETY HAD AN AWKWARD ATTITUDE TOWARDS HER BECAUSE OF HER BARRENNESS.HER MOTHER ALSO WAS MUCH CONCERNED ABOUT THE SITUATION.,THERE ARE  ALSO MANY RITUALS IN THE BOOK….BY SS STUDENT ABOUT TO TAKE WAEC EXAM?

b.THIS BOOK IS ABOUT THE PLIGHTS OF BEING BARREN AND HOW THE SOCIETY OF BRENHOMA ADDRESSES THE ISSUE

c.I SEE OPPORTUNITIES FOR A GHANAIAN MOVIE FROM THE FOLLOWING EXTRACT FROM THE NOVEL.

“POKUWAA BOILED THE HERBS OVERNIGHT IN A POT OF FRESH WATER FROM THE RIVER. AT THE FIRST PEEP OF DAWN, FOR SEVEN DAYS, SHE GOT UP, POURED SOME OF THE HERBAL WATER INTO A SMALL POT AND WALKED TO THE OUTSKIRTS OF THE VILLAGE. THERE, STANDING OVER THE SAME LOG OF THE ONWOMA TREE, SHE SCOOPED THE WATER OVER HER BODY SEVEN TIMES, REPEATING WORDS OF INCANTATION. SHE CONCENTRATED HARDEST ON WALKING STRAIGHT HOME WITHOUT LOOKING BACK. ARRIVING HOME SHE DABBED HERSELF WITH PEPRE AND WHITE CLAY, FILLING THE ROOM WITH A MIXED SCENT OF TREE BARKS AND CLOVER. IF KWADWO WAS ASLEEP SHE NUDGED HIM. HE WOKE UP AND SNIFFED THE SCENT OF THE PEPRE. “THAT IS NICE,” HE SAID. “YOU’D BETTER GET NEARER.” HE HELD HER CLOSE AND RUBBED HIS NOSE INTO HER NECK WHERE THE SCENT WAS STRONGEST.

THEY TOOK DELIGHT IN EACH OTHER, AND POKUWAA WAS CONSCIOUS THAT DURING THIS TIME SHE WAS HANGING ON KWADWO’S PRAISES AND ADMIRATION. SHE DRESSED IN NEW CLOTHES AND PARADED FOR HIM TO SEE HER AND SAY SHE WAS NICE. IT WASN’T KWADWO’S NORMAL WAY TO SPEAK HIS PRAISES. ONCE WHEN HE SAID HE DIDN’T LIKE THE CLOTHES SHE WORE, POKUWAA BROKE OUT CRYING. HE LEARNED HIS LESSON. ALSO, HE DID ENJOY THE WAY HIS ADMIRATION SENT HER WALKING WITH HER CHEST OUT AND SWINGING HER ARMS LUXURIANTLY.”

d.THE SUMMARY/THEME OF THE BOOK 

 “IN THE SMALL GHANIAN VILLAGE OF BRENHOMA, POKUWAA,THOUGH A WOMAN,HAS BECOME A SUCCESSFUL FARMER.BUT TRUE HAPPINESS ELUDES HER: TO HAVE REACHED MIDDLE AGE WITHOUT CHILDREN IS CONSIDERED A GRAVE MISFORTUNE.SHE HAS EVEN FELT COMPELLED TO DIVORCED HER FIRST TWO HUSBAND.EVENTUALLY,THE MAN IN HER LIFE IS KWADWO WHO GREATLY LOVES HER FOR HER CHARM,SYMPATHY AND SWEET CONVERSATION.

ONE OF THE POSSIBLE THEME IS THE THEME OF PREDESTINATION.DESPITE THE BELIEF OF THE PEOPLE IN THE POWERS OF THEIR GODS ESPECIALLY TANO FOR WHICH POKUWAA WAS MADE TO UNDERGO ALL SORTS OF RITUALS IN ORDER FOR HER TO BEGET A CHILD,THE MOST SOUGHT -AFTER CHILD NEVER SURFACED.IT WAS ONLY AFTER SHE DECIDES TO GIVE UP ON HAVING A BABY THROUGH THESE SACRIFICES THAT SHE MIRACULOUSLY CONCEIVED A CHILD.THIS SHOWS THAT SOMETIMES WHAT WE STRUGGLE FOR ALL OUR LIVES ONLY COMES ABOUT WHEN WE ABOUT GIVE UP ON IT.”

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ADDITIONAL CRITIQUES OF “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” FOR WAEC/NECO EXAMS (34)

ADDITIONAL CRITIQUES AND KEYPOINTS OF “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” FOR WAEC/NECO EXAMS (34)

“A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” BY ASARE KONADU

CRITIQUE 2 OF A Woman in Her Prime
22.Compared to the brilliance and brashness of so much Nigerian literature, the quieter literature of Ghana may seem in danger of being overlooked. A Woman in Her Prime is a good example of what a mistake that would be.

23.Like its heroine, A Woman in Her Prime is modest, balanced, calm, and understated, but with a charm and quiet beauty that prove captivating. It centers on a domestic drama that can be stated simply: Pokuwaa would like a child, but her prayers have not been answered.

24.The opening chapter skillfully draws drama from this simple situation. It is the appointed day for sacrifice to the god Tano, but Pokuwaa is running late. She washes herself, rubs her skin with shea cream, and purifies herself with white clay powder, then looks for the black hen she means to sacrifice. She finds only a post in the ground and a broken string. The hen has escaped! She asks some children if they have seen it, and when one child admits to having thrown a stick at a stray black hen she sees that he is a fetish child — the product of prayers and sacrifice like the child she wants for herself. Rather than being harsh with him, she enlists him and the other children to search for her hen. They find the hen in the bushes, about to be swallowed by a snake, but Pokuwaa is just in time to pin down the snake, rescue the hen, and make her sacrifice.

25.In a few pages we learn a lot about Pokuwaa: about her courage and resourcefulness, her faith, the strength of her desire for a child, and the fact that she is good with children and able to gain their trust.

26.Pokuwaa has divorced two husbands, apparently with little fuss, when they prove unable to give her children. (Oddly, there is little suggestion than the villagers think the fault is with her.) She becomes the second wife of a kind man named Kwadwo, and in less than a month she shows signs of being pregnant. She loses the child, though, and a medicine man chides her for not making the proper sacrifice. Pokuwaa’s mother, who had pressed her to leave her second husband, seems nearly as concerned about that lack of a child than Pokuwaa herself. Kwadwo’s first wife also resents her husband’s attention to Pokuwaa. But Pokuwaa and Kwadwo have a gentle, teasing relationship, full of goodnatured humor. Pokuwaa has good friends, too, and a thriving farm. Her wish for a child doesn’t prevent her from enjoying her life.

27.Another small drama arises when Pokuwaa discovers a dead body in the forest. Not wanting to draw attention to herself, she tells only her mother and keeps quiet as the villagers search for the missing man. Her feeling of guilt comes out in her tears at the man’s funeral, causing Kwadwo to suspect she knew the dead man better than she admits.

28.Perhaps because finding the body has caused her to think more deeply about life and death, or perhaps because she has simply had enough of endless rituals and sacrifice, and her mother’s nagging, Pokuwaa finally says, “I think I am going to have peace at last. I am going to give up crying inside me for that which I cannot get. I am not going to sacrifice any more.”

29.There are many African novels that tell of violence, betrayal, and cruel disillusionment. There are few that express the sweetness of village life. With its loving descriptions of the rituals, routines, and gossip of a small community, A Woman in Her Prime expresses how disappointment may be balanced by tenderness and peace — and how we sometimes get the thing we want only after we have stopped striving for it.

geoff wisner

CRITIQUE 3

30.Besides Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall, if there is any African novel that portrays the African society with its sacrosanct beliefs concerning women, it will be Asare Konadu’s A Women in Her Prime; if there is any traditional African novel that treats the theme of barrenness as a fatal misfortune for African women besides Buchi Emecheta’s The Joys of Motherhood, it would rather be A Woman in Her Prime. African literature has got to the level of resurging the old African antiquity and merged it with the present for close juxtaposition. The fact that Asare Konadu’s book treats the universal belief of traditional African society on gods as the givers of glory and destroyers of hope has to be considered.

31.Two things, after reading the book for the second time made me review it: the colorful presentation of traditional African society by the book; and the emotion that surrounds the employment of the book’s diction aimed at meeting the soul of common reader who may not be an African and create the eagerness to know more about traditional African cultural heritage. In the novel, males are regarded as the ‘child givers’ as said by Opanin Owufu statement in the text. Any woman who fails to bear children almost has the blame and labeled ‘useless’. The misfortune of the protagonist of the novel, Aduwa Pokuwa is a true revelation that child bearing is very important for female, as a woman found to be barren as desert cannot be reckoned with in the society. Throughout the novel, there exists conflict between god and God, as great god Tano which Pokuwa has been offering sacrifices for before is relegated as being powerless and all fates are entrusted in God who Pokuwa believes to have erased the indelible mark of barrenness and pessimism from her bosom.
32.Pokuwa has been a successful farmer and industrious woman well reckoned with in the village of Brenhoma from the onset of her marriage to Kofi Dafo but the joy of being happy in her prime  denies her as she still remains a barren in the middle of her age. This apprehension of barrenness makes her divorce her first and  second husband  before meeting Kwadwo Fordwuo who has been there for her not as only husband but also father through his inestimable patience, caressing advices, sympathy and charm, though his fatherhood has been established in another woman. Many years gone without her prayers answered by great Tano and “if she failed to make this sacrifices and lost her chance of child-bearing, her fate as a barren would be made certain. Then her old age would be doomed in loneliness (PG13)’’. Kwadwo Fordwuo, being a good husband, always “sat thinking of how he had prayed and his feet brushed the dew. He had called on great Tano to make it possible for Pokuwa to bear a child.’’ (PG21), before she decides to reject mother’s interference and recourse to charm, drug sacrifices to ensure the taste of joy embedded in motherhood and leave her fate to supreme God, Nye. Her resignation from being submissive to Tano again, according to her, wipes her tears of barrenness, though her mother who has been in whelming entries with great Tano believes he does it. She is eventually left with tale of joy to tell after discovering she is pregnant. What indeed a woman in her prime she is!
33.Analytically, the book is filled with imagery worthy of easy envisage; it has to be given kudos for the type of diction employed. The fact that the diction is emotionally detailed amounts  to critical evaluation of African society which deems the book fit of being appreciated.
34.When talking African literature and women, it is compulsory we consider the problem faced by them in the society. Literature is a window to life and that is the main reason we can’t forget the heart-taking roles of Nnu-ego in Buchi Emecheta’s joys of motherhood and Pokuwa in a women in her prime in order to exhibit the hindrances women are made to battle within African vicinity.  But there is hope for whenever there is a will there must be way. Pokuwa, having won over her barrenness saves the book from being tragic and gives hope for African women. Correspondingly, I find the interconnectivity and intertwining of the sub plots to the main one endearing. Every event related along the major storyline is typically African.
35.However, Asare Konadu’s a woman in her prime leaves the readers in ‘happy suspense’ as we are veiled from what happens to Pokuwa if perhaps she gives birth to the child or another thing ensues. It could be recalled that Pokuwa while with her first husband has miscarriage due to what the priest believes to be her lackadaisical care-freeness towards great god Tano’s orders.  Then if Pokuwa still repeats this again, who knows if Tano may get angered and lead to another brutal miscarriage. Also, portraying Pokuwa as being against the general belief ascribed to the gods is subjective to the author.

 

REVISION NOTES OF “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” BY ASARE KONADU FOR WAEC/NECO LITERATURE EXAMS (33)

 KEYPOINTS OF “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME" BY ASARE KONADU” FOR WAEC/NECO LITERATURE EXAMS (33)

“A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” BY ASARE KONADU” (WAEC/NECO LIT EXAMS)

INTRO

1. Samuel Asare Konadu (1932-1994), a Ghanian publisher and novelist who wrote many novels. A Woman in her Prime  was probably first published in 1967.It was the 40th novel in the African Writers Series, and his other novel Ordained by the Oracle was the 55th
2.The novel of 107 pages was set in the 60’s and the story is about a middle-aged woman, Pokuwaa who has been unable to bear a child.

SUMMARY/CHARACTERS/THEMES

SUMMARY/PLOT

3.The opening chapter skillfully draws drama from a simple situation. It is the appointed day for sacrifice to the god Tano, but Pokuwaa is running late. She washes herself, rubs her skin with shea cream, and purifies herself with white clay powder, then looks for the black hen she means to sacrifice. She finds only a post in the ground and a broken string. The hen has escaped! She asks some children if they have seen it, and when one child admits to having thrown a stick at a stray black hen she sees that he is a fetish child — the product of prayers and sacrifice like the child she wants for herself. Rather than being harsh with him, she enlists him and the other children to search for her hen. They find the hen in the bushes, about to be swallowed by a snake, but Pokuwaa is just in time to pin down the snake, rescue the hen, and make her sacrifice.
4.Pokuwaa is the leading character and her role  has really given a vivid picture and beauty of the story. We were informed that Pokuwaa could not sustain marriage in view of her childlessness. Konadu describes Pokuwaa as one of the industrious female farmers in Brenhoma. This really portrays African culture where women endure deadly farming work.Pokuwaa demonstrates a habit of hard work and she is known as an industrious house wife who always goes to the nearest stream to fetch water to feed the family.

5.She experiences two different marriages with the unproductive problem. Pokuwaa has divorced two husbands, apparently with little fuss, when they prove unable to give her children. (Oddly, there is little suggestion than the villagers think the fault is with her.) She becomes the second wife of a kind man named Kwadwo, and in less than a month she shows signs of being pregnant. She loses the child and a medicine man chides her for not making the proper sacrifice.

6.Pokuwaa’s mother, who had pressed her to leave her second husband, seems nearly as concerned about the lack of a child as Pokuwaa herself. Kwadwo’s first wife also resents her husband’s attention to Pokuwaa. But Pokuwaa and Kwadwo have a gentle, teasing relationship, full of good-natured humor. Pokuwaa has good friends, too, and a thriving farm. Her wish for a child doesn’t prevent her from enjoying her life.
7.In a few pages we learn a lot about Pokuwaa: about her courage and resourcefulness, her faith, the strength of her desire for a child, and the fact that she is good with children and able to gain their trust. Pokuwaa goes through a broad range of sacrifices with a view to recuperating from her barrenness, but all these efforts are always in vain. Some of the medicine men deliberately mislead her and turn to provide frivolous solutions.

8.Her mother is highly concerned and ensures her advices and consolidations are always enforced. She also has a compassionate friend, Koramoa whose companion is significant  in many social ways.
9.Another small drama arises when Pokuwaa discovers a dead body in the forest.We were informed in the novel about Pokuwaa’s terror  of dead bodies. She prefer sitting with and confiding in her mother when the benevolent chief who reigned for fifty years dies. The chief has been nice to Koramoa, her best friend in many standpoints. She describes him as the only chief who shares food as well as so many other things with their families. We understand that the chiefs in Ghana are of great celebrity and that they frequently receive gifts from their disciples.
10. No sooner had she discovered dead body near her farm (and failed to reveal the news to the people of the town, except her trusted mother) than she felt discomfort and nostalgia till the burial of the deceased Yaw Boakye. Not wanting to draw attention to herself, she tells only her mother and keeps quiet as the villagers search for the missing man. Her feeling of guilt comes out in her tears at the man’s funeral, causing Kwadwo to suspect she knew the dead man better than she admits.
11.Perhaps because finding the body has caused her to think more deeply about life and death, or perhaps because she has simply had enough of endless rituals and sacrifice, and her mother’s nagging, Pokuwaa finally says, “I think I am going to have peace at last. I am going to give up crying inside me for that which I cannot get. I am not going to sacrifice any more.”
12.She is optimistic that God is the only initiator of a child and not the great god Tano. She rejected all the encouragement received from the mother and the husband with connection to spiritual sacrifices. We sense from this performance that Pokuwaa is not naturally inspired by traditional practices. She may demonstrate an outmost interest in praising the supreme Almighty God than these lesser gods in Brenhoma. No one dare blame the supreme God.

13.Pokuwaa shows sign of pregnancy within a few months after she boycotts the sacrifices of the great god Tago. She has even forgotten about her barrenness. Her husband Kwadwo doesn’t bother much about the sudden change of her mind and they live happier than before. He is a great hunter so as he brings bush meat home to impress his wife.

14.Her mother, the old lady becomes happy with the sign that her daughter has finally become pregnant.  Her best friend Koramoa was full of joy while the husband, Kwadwo has shock. Good wishers contribute their mature compliments and advices. We were inspired by Maame Fosua’s information; we are informed that when a woman is pregnant she needs to eat more of palm nut soup and chew sugarcane which in turn provide breast milk in abundance.  
PLOT
15.Brenhoma is the setting of the story. A farming community where traditional religion is mostly prevalent. We recognize lack of formal education among the people of this community. They guess their time by associating it to the rotation of the globe in connection with the position of the sun.

 KEYPOINTS OF “A WOMAN IN HER PRIME" BY ASARE KONADU” FOR WAEC/NECO LITERATURE EXAMS (33)

“A WOMAN IN HER PRIME” BY ASARE KONADU” (WAEC/NECO LIT EXAM)

16.CHARACTERS
ADWOA POKUWAA
KWADWO FORDWUO
AFUA KORAMOA
MAAME FOSUO
AKOSUWA SERWUA
KOFI DEEDE
YAW BOAKYE
KOFI BADU
AKOSUA MANSAS

17.THEMES
SUPERSTITION
TRADITION
MARRIAGE
LOVE
HARDWORKING
SOURCES OF PREGNANCY
BRAVENESS

DETERMINATION

 By   Greatylove

CRITIQUE 1

18.Woman is a critical novel of village life with a progressive message that is modern but not reactionary. It deals with the problems of an African woman, Pokuwaa, who is in her 30s and has not had any children, considered a tragic condition by her society, not least by her mother. She has fired two husbands for this reason and her third, Kwadwo, is fearful of losing her. He loves her for her own sake: she has grown up to be a strong person and a good farmer. It is Kwadwo who provides the unconditional acceptance that helps her to resist the psychological pressure of her life (although the author understates this nicely).

19.Abetted by her obsessed mother Pokuwaa has been visiting various shamans and healers. But the omens are never good. When lightening strikes and burns an old tree near the village there is ominous talk of looking about for a witch. Pokuwaa’s mother sees things the old way and is much alarmed. The last straw for Pokuwaa is when she comes across the body of a man near her farm. Out of fear, she doesn’t say anything, letting the men go out and find the missing man themselves. A dire episode indeed.

20.But the last straw is a good thing for Pokuwaa. She gives up on the magic, on the theories of fate. She decides that she must just let life run its course. She gives up her burden. Ah, but this is a West African 60s novel, all 107 pages. So in no time at all she is pregnant and lives happily ever after. I think that Konadu wanted to make the point that a woman needn’t have a child to be fulfilled (at least, no more than a man does): she comes to peace with herself first, gets pregnant after. But his view is that the traditional folkloric account that defined the emotional regime under which Pokuwaa lived was oppressing her, and perhaps contributing to her problems. That is, his target was not so much sexism as superstition, although he understood the negative social consequences for women of magical explanation.

21.In this way his novel is interesting to the western reader today. The western stereotype of the African novel is that it illuminates the positive side of Africa as a cultural soldier defending the homeland. But 60s African writers, like feminists, are often critics of traditions that have come to seem unenlightened and abusive. They did not have much international readership and thus were not as self-conscious as the modern African writer, who tends to criticize regimes more than societies. They thought that they were living through a transformative time, and they try to open doors to the future. They are gentle prophets of modernity, at times, and it is interesting to put their optimism up against the reality of modern Africa (I don’t say that presumptuously, there are lots of ways that comparison could be played out). And there is the persistent theme that good character will out: that is a theme that links African and North American letters.
By Anderson Brown