[ BOOK ] ♭ Africas Tarnished Name ♴ MOBI eBook or Kindle ePUB free

Chinua Achebe is one sassy motherfucker and I could listen to him roasting Joseph Conrad all day Okay, but for real, angry Chinua is my favorite Chinua I totally didn t expect him to let his guard down in this way in these essays and speeches Chinua Achebe, the man, really shines through his words You feel his anger, his frustration, he is so muchrelatable because he is so human and vulnerable in here Africa s Tarnished Name is a superb collection on the theme of the misrepresentation of Africa by Western eyes Chinua Achebe was born in Eastern Nigeria in 1930 He went to the local public schools and was among the first students to graduate from the University of Ibadan After graduation, he worked for the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation as a radio producer and Director of External Broadcasting, and it was during this period that he began his writing career Nigeria needs help Nigerians have their work cut out for them to coax this unruly child along the path of useful creative development We are the parents of Nigeria, not vice versa A generation will come, if we do our work patiently and well and given luck a generation that will call Nigeria father or mother But not yet In the first speech, What Is Nigeria to Me , Achebe looks back on his troubled relationship with his country Being a Nigerian is abysmally frustrating and unbelievably exciting I have said somewhere that in my next reincarnation I want to be a Nigerian again but I have also, in a rather angry book called The Trouble with Nigeria, dismissed Nigerian travel advertisements with the suggestion that only a tourist with a kinky addiction to self flagellation would pick Nigeria for a holiday And I mean both In Traveling White, he tells of an excursion to Victoria Falls on a segregated bus in the Northern Rhodesia of the early 1960s Not noticing that there were separate entrances for Blacks and whites, he d sat down at the front among the Europeans and remained with them, despite their obvious hostility, even after realizing his mistake Playing down his part in his very own Rosa Parks moment , Achebe merely relates the bare facts of the incident, emphasizing instead his despair when the Black passengers rushed to congratulate him after they all disembarked at the falls I was not elated, he recalls A monumental sadness descended on me I could be a hero because I was in transit, and these unfortunate people,brave by far than I, had formed a guard of honor for me In his superb essay Africa s Tarnished Name, Chinua Achebe asserts that colonisation gave the world a particular way of looking or, rather, not looking at Africa that endures, alas, into our own day You can see this way of looking every day if you just open your eyes take university for example, Africa in most curriculums appears only in relation to those topics that are most exotic to the Western consciousness like witchcraft and magic and those of strife and poverty that too often dominate the discourse around the continent.Chinua Achebe explores how Africa came to exist in the European psychological disposition as the farthest point of otherness Europe s very antithesis , despite its closeness to Europe geographically Achebe, his writing being rooted in colonial critique and postcolonial discourse, stresses that Africa s existence as other is by no means in its origin the result of ignorance it is a deliberate invention devised to facilitate two giant historical events the Atlantic slave trade and the colonisation of Africa by Europe I mean, CALL EM OUT Achebe really doesn t hold back and hits with the harsh truths a lot of people don t want to hear This rawness and honesty makes the titular essay by far the strongest of the bunch This tradition has invented an Africa where nothing good happens or ever happened, an Africa that has not been discovered yet and is waiting for the first European visitor to explore it and explain it and straighten it up, or,likely, perish in the attempt As he posits that fundamental to these operations was the dehumanisation and simplification of Africa and its people, Achebe offers specific examples of this poisonous perception and representation of our continent From his fierce critique of Joseph Conrad s Heart of Darkness, to a thoughtful comparison of two painterly depictions of African men by 18th century painters, to his rebuking of a late 20th century PBS documentary, Achebe s essay makes clear the ubiquitous and persisting nature of Africa s tarnished name.The last piece of writing, Africa is People, comes from a speech given at the OECD in 2011 It features one of the most heartfelt moments of this collection, as Achebe s despair and hopefulness shine through Our humanity is contingent on the humanity of our fellows No person or group can be human alone We rise above the animal together, or not at all If we learned that lesson even this late in the day, we would have taken a truly millennial step forward Overall, Africa s Tarnished Name is a very accessible collection of one of Achebe s most witty and passionate writings I d highly recommend grabbing your own copy and reading it The twenty eighth book on the Penguin Modern list is the father of modern African literature Chinua Achebe s Africa s Tarnished Name Of Achebe s work, the only book of his which I had read before picking this up is Things Fall Apart, which I very much enjoyed I was really looking forward, therefore, to reading some of his non fiction, and this collection of electrifying essays on the history, complexity and appropriation of a continent felt like the perfect way in which to begin his oeuvre Africa s Tarnished Name is comprised of four essays What s Nigeria to Me , which is adapted from a speech given in Lagos in 2008 Travelling White , which was first published in The Guardian in 1989 the titular essay, published in Another Africa in 1998 and Africa is People , which has been adapted from a speech delivered in Paris in 1998 All of these essays can be found in the 2011 collection entitled The Education of a British Protected Child.Achebe was born into the Igbo nation , one of the largest ethnic groups in Africa, and the largest in Nigeria In What s Nigeria to Me , Achebe discusses nationality, and the granting of independence to Nigeria in 1960 He goes on to point out the governmental issues which came with this independence, and the subsequent coups and massacres of citizens, which led to a bloody Biafran civil war He discusses, quite openly, his difficult relationship with Nigeria He writes that his feeling toward the country was one of profound disappointment , before going on to say I found it difficult to forgive Nigeria and my countrymen and women for the political nonchalance and cruelty that unleashed upon us these terrible events, which set us back a whole generation and robbed us of the chance, clearly within our grasp, to become a medium rank developed nation in the twentieth century Achebe s essays feel immediately warm and amusing, particularly with regard to their tongue in cheek humour The first essay begins Nigerian nationality was for me and my generation an acquired taste like cheese Or, better still, like ballroom dancing Not dancing per se, for that came naturally but this titillating version of slow slow quick quick slow performed in close body contact with a female against a strange, elusive beat I found, however, that once I had overcome my initial awkwardness I could do it pretty well He discusses, amongst other things, the portrayal of Africa in fiction, and Western perceptions of the continent Achebe makes some very interesting points throughout Africa s Tarnished Name , for instance, begins It is a great irony of history and geography that Africa, whose landmass is closer than any other to the mainland of Europe, should come to occupy in the European psychological disposition the furthest point of otherness, should indeed become Europe s very antithesis The second essay, Travelling White , details Achebe s travels in other African countries during 1960, and the racism which he encountered along the way In each of these essays, Achebe has packed so much into such a compact space, without sparing his reader explanations He writes with brevity, and with confidence, and speaks with both authority and intelligence These essays are filled with wisdom and measured arguments, and are often quite profound There is so much which can be learnt from this important collection, and it is clear to see why the author is so revered Achebe is a gifted essayist, and I certainly do not want to leave it too long before I readof his work. Originally posted on A Frolic Through FictionAfter reading Achebe s Things Fall Apart for uni and needing to write an essay on postcolonialism, I figured this was the perfect time to pick this one up and get a little extra background knowledge for my essay in the process Way to multitask, amiright Reading and studying in one Anyway, this is a collection of really short essays written by Achebe about you guessed it Africa s tarnished name, and how the representation of Africa has been created by Europe specifically, Britain I ve found that I really get along with Achebe style of essay writing, as he s not overly academic and includes anecdotes to support his claims, making thempersonal and humane than just having words thrown at your face as most essays feel You can sense his personality through his writing, hear his disdain at the world and it just works Granted, sometimes he would go off on a tangent and I d get lost somewhere along the way, but it soon realigned to what he was trying to say I suppose it also helps that he always absolutely slates Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad, one of my least favourite books of recent years Good on ya, Achebe I ll read your rants anytime. Clear, well written and powerful indeed Not whiney his words , just well written honesty about Africa Beautiful observations Highly recommended. [ BOOK ] ♨ Africas Tarnished Name ♫ He Needed To Hear Africa Speak For Itself After A Lifetime Of Hearing Africa Spoken About By OthersElectrifying Essays On The History, Complexity, Diversity Of A Continent, From The Father Of Modern African LiteraturePenguin Modern Fifty New Books Celebrating The Pioneering Spirit Of The Iconic Penguin Modern Classics Series, With Each One Offering A Concentrated Hit Of Its Contemporary, International Flavour Here Are Authors Ranging From Kathy Acker To James Baldwin, Truman Capote To Stanislaw Lem And George Orwell To Shirley Jackson Essays Radical And Inspiring Poems Moving And Disturbing Stories Surreal And Fabulous Taking Us From The Deep South To Modern Japan, New York S Underground Scene To The Farthest Reaches Of Outer Space I m very interested in postcolonial literature fiction and nonfiction , but it s been some time since I ve read any since my studies have been focused elsewhere How convenient to have four of Chinua Achebe s essays about postcolonial Africa in one inexpensive volume Achebe writes with such electrifying power The last two essays were the most impressive to me, as they grappled with colonial impositions of representations of Africa This automatically makes me think of Spivak s essay Can The Subaltern Speak , though written a bitaccessibly A quick but extremely thought provoking read filled with zingers. I am a prime example of the paradox of proximity Africa is the closest continent to Europe but in my mind it feels so distant and different This little collection of essays looks at how that idea took root in the white European psyche over centuries and how it still manifests today through policy and practice It also takes the danger of relying on these colonial mythologies when reporting in the post colonial sphere, much like Adiche s danger of a single story The best non fiction exposes our own assumptions and prejudices, diminishing our ignorance if we let it and I think that this little book had given me arealistic impression of one little piece of Africa and all the complexity it contains Now it s my job to follow up and educate myself. This tradition has invented an Africa where nothing good happens or even happened, an Africa that has not been discovered yet and is waiting for the first European visitor to explore it and explain it and straighten it up, orlikely, perish in the attempt. Achebe, , . Absolutely necessary read for anyone who wishes to understand through a series of essays and from one of Nigeria s best authors, what is like to constantly live with the prejudice and oppression of white society of an entire continent. A small collection of extracts of Achebe s essays on Africa, belonging, culture and history Absolutely a must read