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Published On: Sat, Mar 23rd, 2013

Nigerian icon, Chinua Achebe, ‘Things Fall Apart’ author, dies after short illness

Chinua Achebe, the Nigerian novelist, poet and author of the most widely read book in modern African literature, “Things Fall Apart“,  died Thursday in Boston, Massachusetts after a short illness. He was 82.

Chinua Achebe Library of Congress Video Screen Shot

Chinua Achebe
Library of Congress Video Screen Shot

Raised in the Igbo town of Ogidi in southeastern Nigeria, Achebe (born Albert Chinualumogu Achebe), penned more than 20 books. In addition to his magnum opus,  “Things Fall Apart”, Achebe wrote  No Longer at Ease (1960),Arrow of God (1964), A Man of the People (1966), and Anthills of the Savannah (1987).

Things Fall Apart has sold more than eight million copies worldwide and has been translated into more than 50 languages.

He was also accorded his country’s highest award for intellectual achievement, the Nigerian National Merit Award.

Achebe also gained fame in 1975 after his famous criticism of author Joseph Conrad, calling him a “bloody racist”, saying Conrad’s novel, “Heart of Darkness” dehumanized Africans.

Achebe was paralyzed from the waist down after surviving a car wreck in Lagos in March 1990. He was restricted to a wheelchair.

Shortly after the accident,  Achebe became the Charles P. Stevenson Professor of Languages and Literature at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York;  where he held the position for more than fifteen years.

In the autumn of 2009 he joined the Brown University faculty as the David and Marianna Fisher University Professor of Africana Studies.

In a tweet, his publisher Penguin Books described him as a ” brilliant writer and a giant of African literature. Nelson Mandela said he ‘brought Africa to the rest of the world’.”

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan paid tribute to Achebe, hailing him as a cultural icon, a nationalist and an artist.

 

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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