Abstract

This article discusses Tchicaya U Tam’si’s The Glorious Destiny of Marshall Nnikon Nniku (Le Destin glorieux du Maréchal Nnikon Nniku, prince qu’on sort) as a satirical response to the dictatorship of Joseph-Desire Mobutu and his policy of authenticity. I examine Mobutu’s authenticity campaign as a transnational phenomenon that involves accepting and performing international perceptions of Africa as “traditional” and suggest that Tchicaya’s play uses this transnationality to both critique and resist policies such as Mobutu’s. Furthermore, I claim that “authentic” power such as Mobutu’s is primarily a transnational performance and that Tchicaya’s resistance—embodied in the play by Lheki—is equally transnational and performative.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-2044
Print ISSN
0034-5210
Pages
pp. 87-100
Launched on MUSE
2013-07-26
Open Access
No
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