Arrow of God
This is the year of Arrow of God. 2014 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Chinua Achebe’s tome. I have been rereading it lately to write a paper for a conference on this jubilee commemoration later on in the year. I decided, earlier on in the year, to first reread A Man of the People, Achebe’s fourth and later novel after Arrow of God, and then approach the latter – in other words, alternate the sequencing of the epochs of the groundings of the two texts by appearing to reread Arrow of God backwards! For now, I would like to keep the important discovery I think I may have encountered in this fascinating rereading format until my conference paper delivery. It will be published subsequently.
One by-product that has of course emerged in the exercise has been the opportunity to review A Man of the People even if this invariably anticipates its own jubilee two years away. Such a review has a pressing relevance for the present, though, as this year marks the centenary of the British conquest regime’s construction of the unmitigated catastrophe that goes by the name
(Oliver Nelson Quintet, “Six and Four” – personnel: Nelson, alto saxophone; Eric Dolphy, alto saxophone; Richard Wyands, piano; George Duvivier, bass; Roy Haynes, drums [recorded Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, US, 1 March 1961])
A Man of the People (hereinafter, AMP) is published in early January 1966. This is a few days before the military coup d’état that overthrows the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa civilian government which the supposedly outgoing British occupation-governor had imposed on the country in 1959, following a fractious election that the British rigged in favour of its north regional sociopolitical clients. The latter would, in turn, safeguard those vast expropriatory interests of
http://rethinkingafrica.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/elections-in-africa-voter-court-outcome.html, accessed 29 June 2014).
No generation of human beings should live as if the world comes to an end after them ... [T]he people in this generation must work at freeing all the entrapped sovereign nations and their people from the traumatic union of one Nigeria … this generation cannot afford to depart this stage without dissolving the Nigerian union in the interest of the next ones. (added emphasis) (Ebiem: 184-185)Twitter@HerbertEkweEkwe