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Chinua Achebe

Carroll, David, , rev. ed., New York: Twayne,1980.

Innes, C.L., , Cambridge: Cambridge UniversityPress, 1990.

Carroll, David. Chinua Achebe: Novelist, Poet, Critic. Basingstoke, UK: Macmillan, 1990. DOI:
Disillusioned by President Shehu Shagari's failure to fight thecorruption that was impoverishing Nigeria and saddened by the deathof Mallam Aminu Kano, the leader of the People's Redemption Party,Achebe served as Deputy National President of the PRP in the electionyear of 1983. In (1983), he presentedhis political prescription for improving Nigeria.

Killam, G.D., , rev. ed.,London: Heinemann, 1977.

Innes, Catherine Lynnette. Chinua Achebe. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1990. DOI:
A concise overview of Achebe’s writing, it includes a chapter on Achebe’s rewriting of Joseph Conrad and Joyce Cary. It puts the writing in the broader context of African literature and includes a rich select bibliography and chronology.

 

Njoku, Benedict Chiak, , New York: Lang, 1984.

Killam, G. D. The Writings of Chinua Achebe: A Commentary. London: Heinemann Educational, 1977.
A French-language study of the tragedy in Achebe’s historical works. Puts Achebe in the context of other African writers like Sembene Ousmane and in reference to the Western writers Achebe alludes to in his works.

Melone, Thomas. Chinua Achebe et la tragédie de l’histoire. Paris: Présence africaine, 1973.
An idealistic, young Nigerian bureaucrat, trapped between histraditional background and his European education, succumbs to thecorrupting influences of government service.


Ravenscroft, Arthur, , Harlow: Green,1977.

In , Achebe effectively counters thepersistent and self-serving European stereotypes of African culture,particularly the notion that traditional African cultures areauthoritarian, amoral, and unsophisticated. In refutation of thisstereotype, Achebe carefully describes the complexity and fluidity ofIgbo culture, disclosing its essential pluralism. It is, however, asociety that cannot survive unaltered in a modern world. Like Yeats's"Second Coming," from which the novel takes its title, presents an ironic and apocalyptic vision of the failure tomaintain order and balance.

Turkington, Kate, , London:Edward Arnold, 1977.

A discussion of Achebe’s works, including his short stories and poetry. Contains a select bibliography and a chronology of major events in Achebe’s life and literary activities. First published in 1980, but updated to cover later work.

Wren, Robert, be, Washington, D.C.: ThreeContinents Press, 1980.

Okonkwo's greatest flaw is his inability to adapt to culturalchange. He is humiliated that Umuofia does no rise in his support andgo to war against the white man. In a final desperate act, he murdersthe District Commissioner's messenger and hangs himself. At the endof the novel, Okonkwo stands alone, a self-proclaimed defender of arigid traditionalism that contradicts the true flexibility of hisculture. He is an exceptional individual, but the heroism of hisfinal act of defiance is undercut by his alienation from his clan. Hedoes not understand that Umuofia is a living culture that has alwaysadapted in order to meet new challenges. His effort to deny thereality of history condemns him while making a sad comment on thelimitations of human endeavor. The novel dramatizes the situation ofmodern men and modern societies that are forced to adapt andcompromise if they wish to survive. Its central theme, and thecentral theme of all of Achebe's novels, is the tragedy of the man orsociety that refuses or is unable to accommodate change.

Par le mardi, juillet 30 2013, 14:23 -

When Okonkwo accidentally kills a young boy, his clansmen destroyhis compound and exile him to live with his mother's kinsmen forseven years. By the end of his exile, Okonkwo, who had earlier beenknown for his self-interest, has learned to appreciate the bonds ofkinship and the comfort of speaking with one voice. Unfortunately,this awareness comes after the unity of Igbo culture has begun tobreak down. Christianity has divided the community, and Okonkwosenses that this change threatens his connection to his family, hisculture, and his spiritual existence after death. His eldest son'sconversion to Christianity separates Okonkwo from his lineage, andwhen another young convert to Christianity desecrates a traditionalreligious totem, Okonkwo leads the Umuofians who destroy themissionaries's church. Like Okonkwo, the Umuofians face separationfrom their past, and like him they face a future that will requiredifficult compromises; yet, Achebe carefully shows that thedecentralization and nonhierarchical structure of Igbo society allowsfor change.