Conflicts in the Novel "Segu"
Controversies and conflicts are many ways to emphasize key characters and plots in many novels. Authors such as, Maryse Conde use change and the effects of change, to help the reader better understand the underlying themes. In the novel Segu, Conde does just this. The controversy of change in religion creates a fairly large civil conflict amongst the Bambara people. This same civil conflict eventually boils over into the controversy of change in people and trade. The effect of this change would later be described as the world's lowest point of society.
"On the other hand, Islam was dangerous: it undermined the power of kings, according sovereignty to one supreme god who was completely alien to the Bambara universe" (41).
Was Islam the
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He told himself that he would turn into a respected and well-rounded man. Eventually, Tiekoro did just that, becoming a saint to those who adored him in the Islamic community. Even though he was shunned away from his homeland of Segu, Tiekoro still managed to educate and convert young Bambaras at his Koranic school. Dousika, the father of Tiekoro, and the king's most trusted advisor, was considered a bad influence on society. He felt that his position in the government allowed him to disrespect and disgrace not only his ancestors, but his religion as well. Therefore, leaving him as one of the least respected men in the novel. Islam also had a drastic effect on the life of Dousika. Dousika was already seen as an outcast, when his eldest son, Tiekoro decided to disobey his religion and convert to the Islamic culture. This not only set Dousika farther back for failure, but it also shed a negative light on him and his family.
"Dishonor him. Accuse him of having cheated on his taxes. Banish him from court for it. Take away his seat on the council and in the law court. Then put him under surveillance. You'll soon see how he behaves then" (25).
The disgust towards Dousika's character was truly evident, and was not hidden throughout the community. He was known as the outcast and he remained that way. The change of religion in Segu brought together a plethora of different people with very different lifestyles. This change created the controversy and