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Chinua Achebe (1930 - 2013)

Picture of Chinua Achebe
Books by this author: Collected Poems
  • About
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  • Awards
  • Chinua Achebe was born in Ogidi in 1930, and graduated from Ibadan University in 1953. After studying in the BBC staff school with other Commonwealth broadcasters, he worked as a radio broadcaster until 1966, when he left his post as director of external broadcasting in Nigeria during the national upheaval that led to the Biafran War. He was appointed senior research fellow at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and lectured widely abroad. From 1972 to 1975 and again from 1987 to 1988, Mr Achebe was Professor of English at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He has travelled widely in East and Central Africa, the USA and Brazil.

    Chinua Achebe has published novels, short stories, poetry, essays and children's books. His volume of poetry, Christmas in Biafra, was the joint winner of the first Commonwealth Poetry Prize. Of his novels, Arrow of God won the New Statesman-Jock Campbell Award, and Anthills of the Savannah was a finalist for the 1987 Booker Prize. He has received over thirty honorary doctorates and numerous honours from around the world, including the Honorary Fellowship of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Nigerian National Order of Merit. Mr Achebe is survived by his wife in New York, four children and three grandchildren.
    'There was a writer named Chinua Achebe, in whose company the prison walls fell down.'
    Nelson Mandela

      'The father of African literature in the English language and undoubtedly one of the most important writers of the second half of the twentieth century.'
    Caryl Phillips
      'A magical writer - one of the greatest of the twentieth century.'
    Margaret Atwood
     'Chinua Achebe is gloriously gifted with the magic of an ebullient, generous, great talent.'
    Nadine Gordimer

     'He taught us a way of integrating what we know from being African with what we've become - hybrids of a kind.'
    Nuruddin Farah

    Awards won by Chinua Achebe (1930 - 2013) Winner, 1959 Margaret Wong Memorial Prize Winner, 1975 Lotus Award for Afro-Asian Writers Winner, 2002 German Booksellers Peace Prize Winner, 2007 Man Booker International Prize Winner, 2010 Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize Short-listed, 2010 Dayton Literary Peace Prize (US) Short-listed, 1987 Booker Prize Winner, 1964 New Statesman-Jock Campbell Award Joint winner, 1974  Commonwealth Poetry Prize
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