International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

The initiation route of the orphan in Bernard Dadié’s two folktales: “The Black Cloth” and “The Pitcher” from The Black Cloth
Fatiou Akambi Raïmi

African folktales in which the orphan, male or female appears constitute a category distinct from other African tales because the orphan is given particular attention in the society. The orphan’s social condition and the illtreatment he undergoes in his family make him naturally attract the compassion of people around him and even of the providence. The wickedness of a step mother or a guardian causes his departure from home. After going successfully through the different stages of his initiation route and obtaining what he asked for, he returns home completely transformed; with more experiences and often wealthy. The purpose of this article is to show the initiation dimension of the two folktales, “The Black Clothi” and “The Pitcher”ii and the role played by the orphan in such tales.

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