Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart Essay

1050 Words Oct 18th, 2016 5 Pages
Chinua Achebe did not initially set out to write a novel that emphasized the triumphs of African culture. Nor did Achebe embark on a campaign of denigrating slander towards European attitudes. Achebe’s contentious novel Things Fall Apart situates itself post-colonially and, having been written in 1958, the novel came at a time of racially charged civil rights movements. Chinua Achebe remarked upon the injustice of Eurocentric African literature prior to writing his infamous novel. For example, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness received a forthright critique from Achebe over the evident racism laced within the novels wholeness due to its depictions of generic Africans as barbaric cannibals running wild with animalistic tendencies. The once highly regarded novel is now criticized as a measure of dehumanization of the entire continent of Africa and all of its inhabitants in order to convey a solemn, existential struggle of a single European man. This adherence to the discourse of superiority/inferiority could not possibly stand especially not without contradiction hence Achebe’s poignant essay “Image of Africa”. Achebe’s plight to restore agency to Africa resulted in Things Fall Apart and its importance lies within the authors prioritization of fair representation. No extravagance was leant to his depiction, and no negative aspect was overlooked. Things Fall Apart is a perfect example of a post-colonial novel because the story follows a Nigerian villager’s life before and after…

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