This page last revised 4 May 1998
Chinweizu, Onwuchkwa Jemie & Ihechukwu Madubuike Toward the Decolonisation of African Literature London: Routledge, 1985. Good on the postcolonial experience of Achebe and his circle.
Cook, David African Literature: A Critical View Harlow: Longman, 1977. Good overview of the themes that colonisation raises in African writing, and how African writiers have dealt with these.
Crowder, Michael The Story of Nigeria London: Faber & Faber, 1978. An excellent general survey, with a useful index. Particularly good on the road to Nigerian indepence.
Gakwandi, Shatto Arthur The Novel and Contemporary Existence in Africa London: Heinemann, 1977. Useful on the reflection of life in fiction.
Isicheri, Elizabeth A History of Nigeria London: Longman, 1983. Good on pre-colonial tribal life and customs.
JanMohamed, Abdul Manichean Aesthetics: The Politics of Literature in Colonial Africa Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 1983. Excellent book on the prejudices of the whites towards the colonised nations. Highly recommended.
Killam, G.D. Guide to African Literature Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1997. Excellent up to date study of postcolonial literature.
Mahood, M.M. Joyce Cary's Africa London: Methuen, 1964. Slightly dated, but still a good starting point for colonial Africa in relation to the biographical details of Cary experience there. Useful for achieving a more personal look at the colonial project.
Ranger, Terence ''The Invention of Tradition in Colonial Africa''. The Invention on Tradition, ed. Eric Hobsbawm & Terence Ranger, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983, 211-62. Astute insight into the methods used by the Europeans to plant themselves firmly within the psyche of the Nigerians. Very useful for the study of the British monarchy in relation to colonialism.
Bishop, A.G. Gentlman Rider: A Life of Joyce Cary London: Joseph, 1988. Standard biography, and an excellent companion to Mahood's Joyce Cary's Africa (see above).
Echeruo, Michael Joyce Cary and the Novel of Africa London: Longman, 1973. Useful study of the five African novels of Cary. Some good points made on Mister Johnson.
Fisher, Barbara (ed.) Joyce Cary Remembered: In Letters and Interviews by his Family and Others Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe, 1988. Revealing, if one-sided, insight into the man himself.
Hall, Dennis Joyce Cary : A Reappraisal London: Macmillan, 1983. Worth a look, but not as revisionary as the title would suggest.
Modern Fiction Studies, Autumn 1963 Joyce Cary Special Issue. Useful series of essays, although not aimed at the general market.
Starkie, Enid ''Joyce Cary: A Portrait'' Essays by Divers Hands, new series 32 (1963): 125-144. Objective look at the man and his work.
Wright, Andrew H Joyce Cary: A Preface to his Novels London: Chatto & Windus,
1958. Useful introduction that includes a look beyond the African novels into some of Cary's less well known work.
(There are numerous books on Chuinua Achebe, and the following is just a small sample)
Achebe, Chinua ''Named for Victoria, Queen of England'' The Postcolonial Studies Reader 190-3 Bill Ashcroft, Gareth Griffiths & Helen Tiffin (eds) London: Routledge, 1995. Excellent for an insight into Achebe's motivation for writing Things Fall Apart.
Carroll, David Chinua Achebe: Novelist, Poet, Critic London: Macmillan, 1990. Good starting point for studying the works of Achebe. Useful insights into Achebe as a postcolonial critic.
Egudu, R.N. ''Achebe and the Igbo Narrative Tradition'' Research in African Literatures 12 (Spring 1981): 43-54. Very helpful look at the orature of pre-colonial Nigeria.
Harris, Wilson ''The Frontier on which Heart of Darkness Stands'' Research in African Literatures 12 (Spring 1981): 86-93. A useful look at another major colonial author writing on Africa. Good to couple with Kuesgen (Below).
Innes, C.L. Chinua Achebe Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1990. Well worth a look, particularly concerning the comparisons between Achebe and Cary in Chapters one and two.
JanMohamed, Abdul ''Sophisticated Primitivism: the Syncretism of Oral and Literary Modes in Achebe's Things Fall Apart'' Ariel 15.4 (1984): 19-39.
Kuesgen, Reinhardt ''Conrad and Achebe: Aspects of the novel'' World Literature Written in English 24 (Summer 1984): 27-33. Short, but a good account of Achebe's linkages with colonial writing beyond Cary. Useful companion to Wilson Harris (above).
Lindfors, Bernth, Ian Munro, Richard Priebe and Rienhard Sander (eds). ''Interview with Chinua Achebe'' Interviews with Five African Writers in Texas Austin: African and Afro-American Research Institute, University of Texas at Austin, 1972, 5-12. Glimpse at the psyche and motivations of Achebe.
Moore, Gerald ''Chinua Achebe: Nostalgia and Realism'' Seven African Writers London: Oxford UP, 1962. Excellent study of Achebe's art. Particularly useful in gaining an understanding of the pragmatism of The African Trilogy, and its keen portrayal of pre-colonial African tribal existence.
Moyers, Bill ''Interview with Chinua Achebe'' A World of Ideas ed. Betty Sue Flowers. New York: Double Day, 1989. Useful to compare with Linfors (above).
Mugo, Micere Githae Visions of Africa: the Fiction of Chinua Achebe, Margaret Laurence, Elspeth Huxley and Ngugi wa Thiong'o 1978. Interesting comparison of Achebe with other major postcolonial critics. Useful for an understanding that Achebe's case is not unique.
Nwoga, D. Ibe ''The Igbo World of Achebe's Arrow of God'' Research in African Literatures. 12.1 (Spring 1981): 14-42. Excellent study of African existence during the colonial era. Good for a look at Achebe beyond Things Fall Apart.
Oko, Emilia A. ''The Historical Novel of Africa: A Sociological Approach to Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart'' Conch 6.1-2 (1974): 15-46. A detailed look at Achebe's portrayal of a lost African past.
Okoye, Emmanuel Mexiemadu The Traditional Religion and its Encounter with Christianity in Achebe's Novels Bern: P.Lang, 1987. Extremely useful in relation to the coming of the missionaries, and the discord they brought into the tribal existence.
Rutherford, Anna ''Interview with Chinua Achebe'' Kunapipi 9.2 (1987):1-7. Another very useful interview. Helpful in establishing Achebe's motivation.
Turkington, Kate Chinua Achebe: Things Fall Apart London: Edward Arnold, 1977. Good general study of the novel. Useful introductory aid.
Wren, Robert Achebe's World: The Historical and Cultural Context of the Novels of Chinua Achebe. Harlow: Longman, 1981. A very useful insight into the world surrounding Achebe's novels. Good for gaining a broad sounding of a wide variety of his works.
This project was completed under the direction of Dr Leon Litvack as a requirement for the MA degree in Modern Literary Studies in the School of English at the Queen's University of Belfast. The site is evolving and will include contributions from future generations of MA students on other writers and themes.
This page was written by Richard Bleakley. E-mail me with your suggestions.
The Imperial Archive Project is supervised by Leon Litvack. E-mail me with your suggestions.
Top of This Page
[QUB Home Page][Prometheus Home Page][The Imperial Archive]