Understanding Things Fall Apart: Selected Essays and Criticism

Understanding Things Fall Apart: Selected Essays and Criticism

Understanding Things Fall Apart: Selected Essays and Criticism

Understanding Things Fall Apart: Selected Essays and Criticism

Synopsis

Although these essays and criticisms evaluate different linguistic and thematic aspects of "Things Fall Apart," and they vary in scope and depth of treatment, they do share common distinguishing features¿they are provocative, informed and lucidly written. Collectively, they provide a maximum of interpretation of the crucial elements in the work at a maximum level of significance. Iyasere includes a critical introduction, a selected bibliography and an Index to Proverbs. This volume provides a full range of the most perceptive criticism of Achebe's "Things Fall Apart" and will appeal t o both the generalists and specialists of African, African-American and Comparative Literatures.

Excerpt

. . . African people did not hear of cultural for the first time from Europeans; . . . their societies were not mindless but frequently had a philosophy of great depth and beauty, . . . they had poetry and, above all, they had dignity. It is this dignity that many African people all but lost during the colonial period and it is this that they must now regain. . . . The writer's duty is to help them regain it by showing them in human terms what happened to them, what they lost. -- Chinua Achebel

Things Fall Apart, black Africa's most important novel to date, is probably the most widely studied African creative work both in Africa and abroad. The novel's universal appeal has led to its being translated into more than 50 languages; since publication by Heinemann in 1958, the work has sold more than eight million copies. A film version of the novel enjoyed world-wide distribution. In 1993, Everyman's Library, the prestigious series of world classics founded in 1966, added Things Fall Apart to its catalog of publications.

Today, Things Fall Apart continues to attract a vigorous increase in readership and literary prestige in Africa, the West, and in Asia, where sales have soared. Not surprisingly, the novel appeals to readers across various disciplines; as such it is now required reading in courses in world history, world literature, and multiculturalism in universities around the world. Since writing Things Fall Apart, Achebe has published No Longer at Ease, Arrow of God and A Man of the People, among others, but none has attained the richness and the success of Things Fall Apart. According to Eustace Palmer, Things Fall Apart is unquestionably Achebe's best work. "Never again was . . .

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