Chinua Achebe was an eminent Nigerian poet, critic, professor and novelist. He shot to fame with his first novel titled, ‘Things Fall Apart’, which is still widely read and is the most sought after book in modern African literature. In 2007, he won the ‘Man Booker International Prize’. He was an excellent student and earned a scholarship to study medicine, but he swapped medicine with English literature at the university. Some of his well-known works include, ‘A Man of The People’, ‘No Longer At Ease’, ‘Anthills Of The Savannah’ and ‘Arrow Of God’. We have compiled some well-known and quotable quotes and sayings by one of Africa’s foremost novelists which he expressed through his writings, poetry, novels, books, thoughts, lectures, essays, short-stories, folk stories and life. Read through the collection of thoughts and quotations by Chinua Achebe that will give you a glimpse of Igbo society, clash of western and traditional African values and the effect of Christian influences.
If you don’t like someone’s story, write your own.
The world is like a Mask dancing. If you want to see it well, you do not stand in one place
While we do our good works let us not forget that the real solution lies in a world in which charity will have become unnecessary
Nobody can teach me who I am. You can describe parts of me, but who I am – and what I need – is something I have to find out myself.
There is no story that is not true, […] The world has no end, and what is good among one people is an abomination with others.
To me, being an intellectual doesn’t mean knowing about intellectual issues; it means taking pleasure in them
When suffering knocks at your door and you say there is no seat for him, he tells you not to worry because he has brought his own stool.
When the moon is shining the cripple becomes hungry for a walk
Age was respected among his people, but achievement was revered. As the elders said, if a child washed his hands he could eat with kings.
Among the Igbo the art of conversation is regarded very highly, and proverbs are the palm-oil with which words are eaten.
Privilege, you see, is one of the great adversaries of the imagination; it spreads a thick layer of adipose tissue over our sensitivity.
The impatient idealist says: ‘Give me a place to stand and I shall move the earth.’ But such a place does not exist. We all have to stand on the earth itself and go with her at her pace
You do not know me,’ said Tortoise. ‘I am a changed man. I have learned that a man who makes trouble for others makes trouble for himself.
At the most one could say that his chi or … personal god was good. But the Ibo people have a proverb that when a man says yes his chi says yes also. Okonkwo said yes very strongly; so his chi agreed.
Every generation must recognize and embrace the task it is peculiarly designed by history and by providence to perform
He saw himself and his fathers crowding round their ancestral shrine waiting in vain for worship and sacrifice and finding nothing but ashes of bygone days..
No matter how prosperous a man was, if he was unable to rule his women and his children (and especially his women) he was not really a man.
stories are not always innocent;…they can be used to put you in the wrong crowd, in the party of the man who has come to dispossess you