Introduction to Africa Reading Discussions

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Throughout the semester in Introduction to Africa we read five books that focused on stories and narratives that concentrated on African culture and the experiences of many groups of people in Africa. The books that were covered were: Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudau Equiano, Weep Not Child by Ngugi wa Thiongo, So Long a Letter by Mariama Ba, and My First Coup d’Etat by John Dramani Mahama. All five books provided relevant information that reinforced what was taught in class and helped introduce what life is like living in various African countries. Things Fall Apart is an interesting novel that provides an account of a man struggling to keep his culture in tact during the period of European colonialism in Nigeria. He feels so strongly about keeping his culture that when he finds out his fellow villagers do not support his rebellion he hangs himself because he sees no point in continuing to live in a country that is ruled by European settlers. The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudau Equiano is a memoir that describes the life of Equiano and his experiences as a slave since he was little. It is a grasping story that goes into detail about the conditions that many slaves during this time had to face. Weep Not Child tackles the issue of the fight for independence in Kenya. The main character works for a European man and one day he loses his job because he participated in a riot for African rights. He also feels strongly about the importance of freedom in Kenya and the safety of his family. So Long a Letter is a novel that contains a series of letters sent between two women in Senegal. Both of their husbands have gone on and married a second woman. This novel helps reinforc... ... middle of paper ... ...p readers understand that even though polygamy is allowed in Senegal, the emotional distress caused by it really affects women and their daily lives. My First Coup d’Etat My First Coup d’Etat is a memoir written by John Dramani Mahama which focuses on his life and the various places he has lived and the experiences he has had. A Coup d’Etat is when the government of a particular country is overthrown by a military force and the military force takes over. Mahama’s father was the Minister of State in Nkrumah. Mahama begins describing his experiences of his first coup when the Nkrumah government was overthrown in 1966. His father was arrested and detained while he was in class and he had no one to pick him up which caused him a lot of grief. When he finally made it home there were military guards in front of his house and they told him to find another place to go.
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