Blossoms of the Savannah

Blossoms of the Savannah Irony

Ole Kaelo's and Resian's Arranged Marriage (Situational Irony)

When Ole Kaelo and Mama Milanoi allow Oloisudori to marry their daughter, they rob their daughter of the freedom to marry for love—something that they themselves left Nasila in order to do. This is an example of situational irony, because the reader expects Resian's parents to protect Resian, and to be consistent with their own choices in what they allow for their daughter, but instead they agree to let Oloisudori, a dishonest man, take Resian as his wife.

Resian's Plans To Go To Egerton University (Dramatic Irony)

"I don't want to be a parent. At least not in the foreseeable future. I want to study. When I‘ll have obtained my degree, other peripheral matters, such as a husband, children, and such may be considered

Throughout the novel, Resian believes that she will one day leave Nasila to attend Egerton. When she finally confronts Ole Kaelo, she believes Taiyo has already told her father about her aspirations. Unbeknownst to Resian, who thinks she's heading to university, the reader knows that her parents are preparing for her marriage to Oloisudori.

The Fable of Olarinkoi (Situational Irony)

When Joesph Parmuat tells Resian and Taiyo of the fable of Olarinkoi, the girls are shocked to learn that the practice of circumcision was started by the Maa women after they are conquered by Olarinkoi. The fable is meant to be didactic rather than interpreted literally, but nevertheless it does point out an important feature of FGM.

In the Maa community, the operation of FGM is performed by the enkamuratani, a woman. Learning of women's role in continuing FGM subverts the reader's expectations and creates situational irony.

Olarinkoi as the False Savior (Situational Irony)

After saving Resian and Taiyo from their attackers, the old man Olarinkoi—who, significantly, shares a name with the man in Joseph Parmuat's fable—helps Resian escape Nasila and her arranged marriage. While Resian believes she is headed to meet Minik at the farm for runaways, Olarinkoi has actually kidnapped her. In other words, just when the reader thinks Resian is finally safe, she is in imminent danger, thus subverting both Resian and the reader's expectations.