The Postcoloniality of Poor African Leadership in Achebe’s Fiction: A Close Reading of Arrow of God and A Man of the People

Confidence Gbolo Sanka, Patricia Gustafson-Asamoah, Charity Azumi Issaka

Abstract


The paper aims at tracing the genesis of abuse of power and the irresponsibility that goes with it to its full blossoming in Achebe’s fiction through a close reading of Arrow of God and A Man of the People. Disenchantment with leadership in Africa, especially after independence, is not new on the African literary scene. But to Achebe, the problems associated with poor leadership in Africa did not start after independence. Failure in leadership only worsened in most African countries after independence due to the perpetuation of colonial vestiges. By doing a close reading of the two novels and by using the theory of postcoloniality, the researchers compare the traditional world of Ezeulu in Arrow of God to the post-independence setting of Chief Nanga in A Man of the People. The paper concludes that Africa has gone beyond the politics of post-colonialism and is now at the postcoloniality stage. In order for Africans to truly overcome the perennial problem of poor leadership, there is the need for us to first accept our role as a continent in contributing towards the failure of leadership in Africa. There is also the urgency to encourage grass root participation and understanding of modern democracy, to build stronger institutions and to put in place heavier punishments for those who abuse power.

Keywords


Africa, Poor Leadership, Postcoloniality, Power, Responsibility, Greed, Corruption, Social Tension

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijclts.v.6n.2p.84

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