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Personality Of The Week: Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe was born into an Ibo family on Nov. 16, 1930, at Ogidi in Anambra, Nigeria. He was educated at a government college in Umuahia, and he graduated from the University of Ibadan.

While working for the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation, he composed his first novel, Things Fall Apart (1959), at a time when Nigerian prose fiction was represented solely by the fantastic folklore romances of Amos Tutuola and the popular stories of urban life of Cyprian Ekwensi. Achebe’s novel introduced serious social and psychological analysis into Nigerian literature. It is set in the early days of colonization and tells the tragedy of a warrior hero who rigidly identifies with the values of traditional Ibo society.”Things Fall Apart” went on to sell more than 12 million copies and been translated into more than 50 languages.

Other notable works include; The African Trilogy, No Longer at Ease, Arrow of God, A Man of the People and Anthills of the Savannah.

When the region of Biafra broke away from Nigeria in 1967, Achebe became a supporter of Biafran independence and acted as ambassador for the people of the new nation. The war ravaged the populace, and as starvation and violence took its toll, he appealed to the people of Europe and the Americas for aid. In 1990 he was involved in a car accident which left him partially disabled.

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