Colonial Perception and Re-imaging the African Identity in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart

Joseph Abel

Abstract


Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart offers an important paradigm alternative perception of the African and yields the foundational premise upon which African cultural nationalism and literary discourse have been built. Things Fall Apart has remained a critical text in the interrogation of long held perceptions of the African especially in such texts as Joyce Cary's Mister Johnson and Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness. Indeed, Achebe proceeds in the process of negotiating and constructing the identity of the African image through a   deliberate and sustained projection of those distinct values that define the African essence. Thus, Things Fall Apart effectively appropriates colonial language in its delineation of African culture and history; and engages in the process of re-imaging of the African by undermining the colonial conceptualizations of the African. This paper is thus interested in Achebe's mapping of the African historical and cultural topography in a way which draws significant impact on the decolonization process and the transformative role of the Things Fall Apart in the evolution of African literature from its position of marginality.


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References


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