Remembering a Great Man

Posted by M ws On Friday, April 26, 2013 0 comments
Chinua Achebe's writings had a strong impact on my perspective of life and discrimination. It was back in the 1970's when I first heard about him as I had to study his novel 'Things Fall Apart", the best-selling and most important work of modern African literature, for my English Literature exam for the M.C.E. I still have my copy of that book filled notes scribbled in my tiny handwriting.

According to this site:

Chinua Achebe, born Albert Chinualumogu Achebe, 16 November 1930 – 21 March 2013) was a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor, and critic. He was best known for his first novel and magnum opus, Things Fall Apart (1958), which is the most widely read book in modern African literature.



Raised by his parents in the Igbo town of Ogidi in southeastern Nigeria, Achebe excelled at school and won a scholarship for undergraduate studies. He became fascinated with world religions and traditional African cultures, and began writing stories as a university student. After graduation, he worked for the Nigerian Broadcasting Service (NBS) and soon moved to the metropolis of Lagos. He gained worldwide attention for Things Fall Apart in the late 1950s; his later novels include No Longer at Ease (1960), Arrow of God (1964), A Man of the People (1966), and Anthills of the Savannah (1987). Achebe wrote his novels in English and defended the use of English, a "language of colonisers", in African literature. In 1975, his lecture An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" featured a famous criticism of Joseph Conrad as "a bloody racist"; it was later published amid some controversy. CLICK HERE for more.

Here's a BBC report about his death:


Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe, who has died aged 82, was revered throughout the world for his depiction of life in Africa.

He wrote about the effects of colonialism and its aftermath, as well as political corruption and attempts to introduce democratic reforms.

Born in 1930, he has often been referred to as the founding father of African literature in English.

Chinua Achebe said that any good story or any good novel should have a message and a purpose.

His first novel - the groundbreaking Things Fall Apart, published in 1958 - dealt with the clash between Western and traditional African values - and how traditional norms and values had been undermined.

Translated into more than 50 languages, its focus was on the traditions of Igbo society in south-eastern Nigeria, where he grew up.

"The white man is very clever. He came quietly and peaceably with his religion. We were amused at his foolishness and allowed him to stay. Now he has won our brothers, and our clan can no longer act like one. He has put a knife on the things that held us together and we have fallen apart," one of the characters said.

He wrote his novels in English and defended the use of English, a "language of colonisers", in African literature.

After he won the Man Booker International Prize for his work in 2007, he told the BBC that African literature was important for the wider literary world, and for African states themselves.

 Some facts about Chinua Achebe:



  • Born in 1930 - 30 years before Nigeria's independence
  • Referred to as the founding father of African literature
  • First novel Things Fall Apart, published in 1958, has sold 10 million copies
  • Wrote about the effects of colonialism and corruption
  • Later novels include No Longer at Ease (1960), Arrow of God (1964), A Man of the People (1966), and Anthills of the Savannah (1987)
  • Nelson Mandela called him "the writer in whose company the prison walls came down"
  • Met his wife Christie Okoli in Lagos. They married in 1961 and had four children
  • Involved in a road accident in 1990 which left him partially paralysed 

  • CLICK HERE for more.




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