Uneven account of African torment

There Was A Country by Chinua Achebe. Allen Lane, €25.20. Reviewed by Kevin Power.

13th October, 2012
Uneven account of African torment
Chinua Achebe: at its best, his work is lucid, balanced and fascinatingly acute. Photo: Getty

There Was A Country by Chinua Achebe

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Chinua Achebe's literary fame rests largely on two pieces of writing. The first, of course, is his classic debut novel, Things Fall Apart (1958), which describes in clear, resonant prose the destruction wrought upon one Igbo tribe when European colonisers arrive in their village. The second is an essay, An Image of Africa (1975), in which Achebe takes to task Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness and concludes that...

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