The Lion and the Jewel

by

Wole Soyinka

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The Statue of Baroka Symbol Analysis

The Statue of Baroka Symbol Icon

The stage directions indicate that the statue of Baroka is well-endowed, which associates the statue with Baroka’s power and virility, since he derives power from his ability to have sex with his wives and father children. However, the statue doesn't appear in the play before Sadiku finds out that Baroka's manhood (virility) is gone. When Sadiku uses the statue to mock Baroka's inability to perform sexually, it turns Baroka into a joke and an object. By reducing Baroka to a literal object, the women of the play experience a sense of power and autonomy. This is a sham, however—Baroka is still able to perform sexually, which he reveals when he rapes Sidi. Thus, the statue is indicative of women's place in Yoruba society. Women are treated as living, breathing objects, and the only time they can experience power over men is when the men are reduced to actual objects. However, that power is an illusion.

The Statue of Baroka Quotes in The Lion and the Jewel

The The Lion and the Jewel quotes below all refer to the symbol of The Statue of Baroka. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Tradition vs. Modernity Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Three Crowns Books edition of The Lion and the Jewel published in 1997.
Night Quotes

Like the foolish top you think the world revolves around you... fools! fools! it is you who run giddy while we stand still and watch, and draw your frail thread from you, slowly, till nothing is left but a runty old stick.

Related Characters: Sadiku (speaker), Baroka
Related Symbols: The Statue of Baroka
Page Number: 32
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Statue of Baroka Symbol Timeline in The Lion and the Jewel

The timeline below shows where the symbol The Statue of Baroka appears in The Lion and the Jewel. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Night
Men vs. Women Theme Icon
Pride, Vanity, and the Power of Images Theme Icon
...magazine. Sadiku furtively enters the village center with a bundle. She pulls out a carved figure of Baroka, studies it, and laughs. She sets it down as Sidi stares. Sadiku addresses... (full context)
Men vs. Women Theme Icon
Language, Words, and Trickery Theme Icon
...chant of "take warning, my masters/We'll scotch you in the end" and dances around the statue of Baroka. Sidi approaches and scares Sadiku. Sadiku tells Sidi that this time of victory... (full context)
Men vs. Women Theme Icon
Pride, Vanity, and the Power of Images Theme Icon
Language, Words, and Trickery Theme Icon
...cheers for womankind and the two women take up Sadiku's chant and dance around the statue. (full context)