On Thursday, March 21, Albert Chinualumogu Achebe, or Chinua Achebe, as he was known to book lovers worldwide, died in Boston. He was 82.
In 1958 Achebe published Things Fall Apart (Anchor), which charts the the rise and fall of Ibo farmer Okokonkwo set against the backdrop of rising 19th century British colonial rule and culture clashes in Nigeria. Today, Things Fall Apart has been translated into 45 languages and sold more than 10 million copies. The novel, and Achebe’s subsequent works transformed international publishing and the ways in which we viewed literature. True, there had been other Nigerian writers before Achebe including Amos Tutuola and Cyprian Ekwensi. But Things Fall Apart connected with readers in ways readers hadn’t experienced African narratives.
You can check out the rest of the moving tribute and more about Achebe on on Essence.