Achebe, Chinua

Achebe, Chinua

▪ Nigerian author
in full  Albert Chinualumogu Achebe 
born Nov. 16, 1930, Ogidi, Nigeria
 prominent Igbo (Ibo) novelist acclaimed for his unsentimental depictions of the social and psychological disorientation accompanying the imposition of Western customs and values upon traditional African society. His particular concern was with emergent Africa at its moments of crisis; his novels range in subject matter from the first contact of an African village with the white man to the educated African's attempt to create a firm moral order out of the changing values in a large city.

      Educated in English at the University of Ibadan, Achebe taught for a short time before joining the staff of the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation in Lagos, where he served as director of external broadcasting during 1961–66. In 1967 he cofounded a publishing company at Enugu with the poet Christopher Okigbo (Okigbo, Christopher), who died shortly thereafter in the Nigerian civil war. In 1969 Achebe toured the United States with his fellow writers Gabriel Okara (Okara, Gabriel) and Cyprian Ekwensi (Ekwensi, Cyprian), lecturing at universities. Upon his return to Nigeria he was appointed research fellow at the University of Nigeria and became professor of English, a position he held from 1976 until 1981 (professor emeritus from 1985). He was director (from 1970) of two Nigerian publishers, Heinemann Educational Books Ltd. and Nwankwo-Ifejika Ltd. After an automobile accident in Nigeria in 1990 that left him partially paralyzed, he moved to the United States, where he taught at Bard College in New York.

      Things Fall Apart (1958), Achebe's first novel, concerns traditional Igbo life at the time of the advent of missionaries and colonial government in his homeland. His principal character cannot accept the new order, even though the old has already collapsed. In No Longer at Ease (1960) he portrayed a newly appointed civil servant, recently returned from university study in England, who is unable to sustain the moral values he believes to be correct in the face of the obligations and temptations of his new position.

      In Arrow of God (1964), set in the 1920s in a village under British administration, the principal character, the chief priest of the village, whose son becomes a zealous Christian, turns his resentment at the position he is placed in by the white man against his own people. A Man of the People (1966) and Anthills of the Savannah (1987) deal with corruption and other aspects of postcolonial African life.

      Achebe also published several collections of short stories and a children's book, How the Leopard Got His Claws (1973; with John Iroaganachi). Beware, Soul-Brother (1971) and Christmas in Biafra (1973) are collections of poetry. Another Africa (1998) combines an essay and poems by Achebe with photographs by Robert Lyons. Achebe's books of essays include Morning Yet on Creation Day (1975), Hopes and Impediments (1988), and Home and Exile (2000). In 2007 he won the Man Booker International Prize.

Additional Reading
Ezenwa-Ohaeto, Chinua Achebe (1997); and Tijan M. Sallah and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chinua Achebe, Teacher of Light (2003), are biographies. C.L. Innes, Chinua Achebe (1990), is a comprehensive critical study of Achebe's works through Hopes and Impediments. Useful reference works include M. Keith Booker (ed.), The Chinua Achebe Encyclopedia (2003); and Jago Morrison, The Fiction of Chinua Achebe (2007).

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Achebe,Chinua — A·che·be (ä chāʹbā), Chinua. Born 1930. Nigerian writer whose works, including the novel Things Fall Apart (1958), describe traditional African life in conflict with colonial rule and westernization. * * * …   Universalium

  • Chinua Achebe — Achebe redirects here. For the fictional character, see Achebe (comics). Chinua redirects here. It is not to be confused with Chin hua. Chinua Achebe Chinua Achebe (2008) Born Albert Chinụalụmọgụ Achebe 16 …   Wikipedia

  • Achebe — Chinua Achebe (* 16. November 1930 in Ogidi, Nigeria) ist ein nigerianischer Schriftsteller. Der Name Chinualumogu bedeutet „Gott kämpft zu meinen Gunsten“.[1] Chinua Achebe gilt als der Begründer der modernen nigerianischen Literatur und… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Chinua Achebe — Chinua Achebe. Chinua Achebe (Ogidi, 16 de noviembre de 1930) es un escritor nigeriano en lengua inglesa. Novelista, poeta y crítico literario, es sobre todo conocido por una de sus obras, Todo se desmorona (Things Fall Apart), una de las novelas …   Wikipedia Español

  • ACHEBE (C.) — ACHEBE CHINUA (1930 ) Né à Ogidi, au Nigeria, Achebe a étudié à Ibadan et à Londres avant de travailler, dès 1954, à la radio nigériane comme producteur puis directeur régional. Directeur des éditions Citadel Books à Enugu, il a fondé et dirigé… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Achebe — (Chinua) (né en 1930) écrivain nigérian de langue anglaise. Sa saga (Le monde s effondre, 1958; le Malaise, 1960; la Flèche de Dieu, 1964; le Démagogue, 1966) commence au début de la colonisation et s achève peu après l indépendance du Nigeria …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Chinua Achebe — Chinua Achebe, 2008 Chinua Achebe (* 16. November 1930 in Ogidi, Nigeria, eigentlich Albert Chinụalụmọgụ Achebe) ist ein nigerianischer Schriftsteller. Der Name Chinụalụmọgụ stammt aus der Igbo Sprache und bedeutet „Gott kämpft zu meinen Gunsten“ …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Achebe —   [englisch ɑː tʃeɪbeɪ], Chinua, nigerianischer Schriftsteller englischer Sprache, * Ogidi (Ostnigeria) 15. 11. 1930; beschreibt in seinen ersten drei Romanen die Reaktionen seines Ibo Volkes auf die christliche Mission und die koloniale… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Achebe — [ä chā′bā] Chinua [chin′wä΄] (born Albert Chinualumgu) 1930 ; Nigerian critic & writer …   English World dictionary

  • Chinua Achebe — Albert Chinualumogu Achebe Genres Roman Nouvelle Poème Chinua Achebe (né le 16 novembre 1930) est un écrivain nigérian d expression anglaise. Il est romancier et poète. Il débute avec Le monde s effondre (Things Fall Apart) qui est,… …   Wikipédia en Français

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