Sunday, October 11, 2009

Did Chimamanda Get the African Story Right?

Last week I posted the singularly beautiful talk delivered by our own brilliant Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. It was titled: "The dangers of a Single Story." The following day I also posted what I thought was, or should be, seen as a counter to Chimamanda's Achebean single story: Chris Abani's muse on humanity. I love both speeches, and I am particularly proud of these giants of the reborn African literature.
One question remains to be answered. More than fifty years after the publication of Things Fall Apart, which did a great job in challenging the Western narrative of Africa, it would seem that we Africans still have the need to keep on begging the West to understand us. Do we really need the West to understand us more than we need to understand ourselves, one another? Do Nigerians understand one another? I don't have an answer to this. If anyone has, I would be more than pleased to learn from him/her.

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