How Does Achebe 's Perspective Influence His View Of Nigeria?

1605 Words Apr 23rd, 2016 7 Pages
Thesis: The Igbo culture was one which kindled a spirit of democracy and competitiveness, allowing it to rise above all other ethnic groups and thrive in early Nigeria. Such achievement was frowned upon by other ethnic groups and invoked hostility between them. The Biafran War, (a result of this hostility) ultimately led to Nigeria’s decline, forever changing its legacy.

How does Achebe’s perspective influence his view of Nigeria?
Chinua Achebe grew up as an Igbo who supported the Biafrans in the Biafran civil war. While the Nigerian Government and the OAU (Organization of African Unity) believe that a unified Nigeria is a stronger Nigeria, Achebe cites the Biafran War as the reason for Nigeria’s decline and believes that the Igbo people would be better off in Biafra. Such a perspective can be found in Achebe’s book How the Leopard Got His Claws. In his book, Achebe describes how a leopard ruled kindly and didn’t have sharp teeth or claws. Then, the dog took over the kingdom and the animals supported him. The leopard then returned with his claws and forcibly took back the kingdom. Essentially, Achebe is describing the story of Biafra, and how the use of violence by the leopard (Nigerian government) forever destabilized the animal kingdom(Nigeria and the Igbo people). One might also point to his poem Vultures on page 204 for Achebe’s view of Nigeria (specifically the Biafran War). In the poem, he discusses two vultures who had “picked the eyes of a swollen corpse...nestled…

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