Adsf Essay

10731 words - 43 pages

Things Fall Apart
AUTHOR BIO Full Name: Albert Chinualumogu Achebe Pen Name: Chinua Achebe Date of Birth: November 16, 1930 Place of Birth: Ogidi, Nigeria Protectorate Date of Death: March 21, 2013 Brief Life Story: Achebe was raised by his parents in the Igbo town of Ogidi in southeastern Nigeria. Although his parents were Protestant and practiced the Christian faith, Achebe and his siblings were also exposed to traditional Igbo culture, which included a heavy emphasis on storytelling. Achebe excelled in school and began writing stories as a university student. After graduation, he worked first as an English teacher in the town of Oba. Later, he worked for the Nigerian Broadcasting Service (NBS) in the metropolis of Lagos. He published and gained worldwide attention for Things Fall Apart in 1958. Over the next several decades, Achebe was involved in a mix of academia and Nigerian politics, publishing a number of short stories, children's books, and essay collections and splitting his time between Nigeria and the United States until 1990, when he returned to the US after a car accident left him partially disabled. Achebe continued to publish and held a faculty position at Brown University from 2009 until his death in 2013. KEY FACTS Full Title: Things Fall Apart
Genre: Novel / Tragedy Setting: Pre-colonial Nigeria, 1890s Climax: Okonkwo's murder of a court messenger Antagonist: Missionaries and White Government Officials (Reverend Smith and the District Commissioner) Point of View: Third person omniscient HISTORICAL AND LITERARY CONTEXT When Written: 1957 Where Written: Nigeria When Published: 1958 Literary Period: Post-colonialism Related Literary Works: While Achebe was working on Things Fall Apart, he had very few models of African fiction written in English. Two notable exceptions were Amos Tutuola's Palm-Wine Drinkard and Cyprian Ekwensi's People of the City. However, though Achebe appreciated the work of these fellow Nigerian writers, he worked to develop a style of his own. In 1962, Achebe also had the opportunity to attend a conference with several contemporary African writers in English, including Ghanaian poet Kofi Awoonor, Nigerian playwright and poet Wole Soyinka, and US poet Langston Hughes. At the conference, Achebe was asked to read a student's manuscript, and impressed with the work, he forwarded it to an agent. The student was Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, who is now a widely recognized Kenyan writer, and the manuscript was his first published work, Weep Not, Child. Related Historical Events: Things Fall Apart is set in 1890, during the early days of colonialism in Nigeria. Achebe depicts Igbo society in transition, from its first contact with the British colonialists to the growing dominance of British rule over the indigenous people. Literary works about this period often painted stereotypical portraits of native Africans as primitives-even works that were critical of the European colonizers, such as Heart of Darkness by
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