The Trials of Brother Jero


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I like the title, there is a bit of irony to it. Having not read it, the reader thinks of a holy Christlike figure suffering for his cause. Really Brother Jero is an evangelical con artist who preaches to the naive and desperate. Still the guy goes through trials which makes the title work on different levels.

Undeniable is the fact that Soyinka has left no stone unturned in challenging the very title of his play in the way that we do have the opportunity to view the trials of the ''immaculate Jero'' who is a lecherous, materialistic fellow who pretends to be a holy man under the garb of religion. The title of the play is quite paradoxical for it is the trials of the 'evil' that is Jero. By portraying Amope,the pragmatic figure in the play,we note that she is the only character that resist Jero's negativity and we can also put forward that it is via Amope that Jero's trials take place.How? Amope does not least hesitate to defame Jero, She beats Jero black and blue, tears his cloths and abuses him publicly but still Jero does not perish. He even manages to escape Chume's allegations which can be seen as a danger to his prophecy. The shrewdness of Jero helps him a lot in overcoming all these trials and emerges as someone much more powerful and determined.