A Deconstruction of Chimamanda Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and China Achebe's There Was a Country as Nigerian Civil War Novels

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A DECONSTRUCTION OF CHIMAMANDA ADICHIE’S HALF OF A YELLOW SUN AND CHINUA ACHEBE’S THERE WAS A COUNTRY AS NIGERIAN CIVIL WAR NOVELS


BY

OYELEKE SUNDAY MICHAEL

U14EL1063









A PROJECT SUBMITTED TO THE DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH AND LITERARY STUDIES, FACULTY OF ARTS, AHMADU BELLO UNIVERSITY ZARIA IN FULFILMENT OF ONE OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AWARD OF BACHELOR OF ARTS DEGREE IN ENGLISH (LITERATURE)










OCTOBER, 2018.



Declaration

I hereby declare that this research is done by Oyeleke Sunday Michael of the Department of English and Literary Studies, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria as part of the requirements for the award of a Degree of Bachelor of Arts, B.A English (Literature). All literatures/works used are appropriately acknowledged and documented in quotations and references.






………………………….                                                              …………………………

Oyeleke Sunday Michael                                                               Date

(Researcher)

















Certification

I hereby certify that this research work, done by Oyeleke Sunday Michael of the Department of English and Literary Studies Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, has been read and has met the requirements for the award of a Bachelor of Arts (B.A) in English (Literature).





………………………….                                                                    ……………………………..

Dr Keston Odiwo                                                                                                    Date

(Project Supervisor)




………………………….                                                                    ……………………………..

Dr Keston Odiwo                                                                                                    Date

(Project Coordinator)




………………………….                                                                    ……………………………..

Prof. T.Y. Surakat                                                                                                   Date

(Head of Department)




………………………….                                                                    ……………………………..                                                                                                   

(External Supervisor)                                                                                              Date


Dedication

This project is dedicated to the beloved memories of my parents, late Mr. and Mrs. Ezekiel Oyeleke Opawale.



























Acknowledgements

My foremost thanks to God Almighty for every positive thing about or connected to me, this research included. I gratefully and publically express thanks for financial, moral, academic, spiritual, and all the forms of supports I have ever received through God’s instruments –people. Personally, God remains the only “logo” that cannot be deconstructed in my life. Without much ado, I will always be indebted to the following persons for their contributions to the success of this research:

Special thanks to all my lecturers notably my supervisor cum mentor Assoc. Prof. Keston Odiwo, my favourite lecturers Dr. Edward Abah, Dr. Isah Ibrahim for guiding my writing skills beyond class room formalities, Dr. Suleiman Jaji, Dr. Mrs Agofure Joyce, Prof. Aliyu Abubarkar Liman, Prof. Ezekiel Akuso, Prof. Sani A., Mr Stephen Joseph, Mr. Mua’zu Maiwada, Mr. Dominic Aboi, Mr. Ismaila Abdullahi, Prof. G.Y. Sadiq, Dr. Amodu Jonah, Dr. Saminu, Dr. Auwa, Dr. Jegede, Dr. Emmanuel Gana, Mr. Isah Rabiu, Prof. Taminu and Prof. T.Y. Surakat etc. for expanding my horizons in English, theatre and literary studies, and the humanities in general.

Thanks to my siblings – Israel Oyeleke, Emmanual Oyeleke and Lydia Oyeleke for the many supports. Thanks to my uncles like fathers – Barr. Japhet Opawale with his lovely wife and family, and Lieut. Adebayo Olufemi George for their moral and financial assistance when the going was tough.

It is widely said about family that “blood is thicker than water”. Well, to a family I met at Ahmadu Bello University, I can proudly say, “blood cannot be formed without water”. As water, they constitute a huge percentage of the blood that now flows in my vein and now bonds us as one big family. First, special thanks to Associate Professor Keston Odiwo and family for always watering my brain, heart and pockets. My “brothers and sisters” call him my “school father”: just call him my “father who art on earth”.

I do not have friends. I only have brothers and sisters from different parents. Special thanks to the better parts of a trio I would not want to leave for a second – Klanzama Stephen and Nureni Ibrahim for being many things altogether in two, notably my private teachers, contributors and editors of this work. Thanks to Adedokun Abiodun Lateefat, Abdulbaki Muhideen, Mbanyaghen. Dzungwenen and Dr. Reuben Olubunmi David for their kindness, especially for their regular supply of “stomach materials” that aided my well-being and strength to carry out this research. Thanks to Mohammed Yahaya, Munir Atadoga, Aminu Turanke, Asogba Dele, Miriam Simeon Ometere, Taiye John, Adenuga Omolade Precious, Boluwatiwi Odofin, Ajetunmobi Afeez, my amiable class Representatives Grace Davidson and Usman Sani, Nasels President David Ejeh Vincent, Adeleke Mayowa, Abubakar Garba and a host of others for their contributions in their diverse forms that aided the success of this project.

None the least, special thanks to Rehoboth Dreams Solid Foundations (RDSF) for their financial support which eased the production of this research to a large extent.

May we always be there for one another!











Abstract


The vast majority of Nigerian Civil War novels, fiction and non-fiction, from the government or the people’s perspectives are almost exclusively written by the Igbos or “Biafrans”.  Individuals like Wole Soyinka, Ken Saro Wiwa and Festus Iyayi, among others that have written on the thematic concern seem to have personal rivalry with the Federal side. In essence, there seems to be little or no attempt at any sort of narrative to expose the permutations and hidden multiple sides to the history of the Nigerian Civil War. Using the theory of deconstruction, this project attempts to dismantle authorial modes of thought, search for parts that are ambiguously delineated and appraise some data presented in critical contexts which reveal the domination of one mode of meaning or interpretation over another as found in Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun and Achebe’s There Was a Country. It aims to supplement and show some of the binary opposing flow of analyses generated within and outside the selected texts. This research also provides the emergence and development of the Nigerian novel with some existing critical responses about the selected novels in order to foreground the relationship between history and literature. It further gives a glimpse to the post-independence and the contemporary Nigeria in terms of political and socio-economic development so as to aid the understanding of some of the subject matters delineated in the selected novels. This work bids to add relevance to the study Nigerian Civil War literature and the humanities at large through a deconstruction of Nigeria-Biafra Opposition found in the selected novels and attempts to reconstruct by synergizing the supplemented analyses. Thus, it is worthwhile to have a proper and multiple-sides interpretations of the selected novels in their permutations as Biafra-Nigeria, Nigeria- Biafra, Biafran war or the Nigerian Civil War novels.
















TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title Page…………………………………………………………………………………………..i

Declaration………………………………………………………………………….......................ii

Certification………………………………………………………………………………………iii

Dedication………………………………………………………………………………………...iv

Acknowledgement………………………………………………………………………………...v

Abstract…………………………………………………………………………………………..vii

Table of Contents………………………………………………………………………………..viii

CHAPTER ONE

 Background to the Study……………………………………………………………………..1

1.1. Emergence and Development of the Nigerian Novel………………………………………...3

1.3. Contemporary Nigerian Novel……………………………………………………………….7

1.4. Post-Independence/Contemporary Nigerian Society:

       Political and Socio-Economic Development…………………………………........................8

1.5. Theoretical Framework……………………………………………………………………...14

1.6. Literature Review……………………………………………………………………………18

1.6.1. Chinua Achebe’s There Was a Country and Critical Responses…………………………..18

1.6.2. Chimamamda Ngozi Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun 

          and Critical Responses…………………………………………………………………….20

CHAPTER TWO

2.1. A Deconstruction of Nigeria-Biafra Opposition in

       Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun………………………………………………………………22







CHAPTER THREE

3.1. A Deconstruction of Nigeria-Biafra Opposition in 

       Achebe’s There Was a Country……………………………………………………………..31

CHAPTER FOUR

4.1. A Reconstruction of Achebe’s There Was a Country and 

       Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun as Nigerian Civil Novels......................................................44

4.2. Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………..46

4.3. References…………………………………………………………………………………...47


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APA

Michael, S (2019). A Deconstruction of Chimamanda Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and China Achebe's There Was a Country as Nigerian Civil War Novels. Afribary.com: Retrieved June 16, 2019, from https://afribary.com/works/a-deconstruction-of-chimamanda-adichie-s-half-of-a-yellow-sun-and-china-achebe-s-there-was-a-country-as-nigerian-civil-war-novels

MLA 8th

Sunday Oyeleke, Michael. "A Deconstruction of Chimamanda Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and China Achebe's There Was a Country as Nigerian Civil War Novels" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 26 Feb. 2019, https://afribary.com/works/a-deconstruction-of-chimamanda-adichie-s-half-of-a-yellow-sun-and-china-achebe-s-there-was-a-country-as-nigerian-civil-war-novels . Accessed 16 Jun. 2019.

MLA7

Sunday Oyeleke, Michael. "A Deconstruction of Chimamanda Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and China Achebe's There Was a Country as Nigerian Civil War Novels". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 26 Feb. 2019. Web. 16 Jun. 2019. < https://afribary.com/works/a-deconstruction-of-chimamanda-adichie-s-half-of-a-yellow-sun-and-china-achebe-s-there-was-a-country-as-nigerian-civil-war-novels >.

Chicago

Sunday Oyeleke, Michael. "A Deconstruction of Chimamanda Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and China Achebe's There Was a Country as Nigerian Civil War Novels" Afribary.com (2019). Accessed June 16, 2019. https://afribary.com/works/a-deconstruction-of-chimamanda-adichie-s-half-of-a-yellow-sun-and-china-achebe-s-there-was-a-country-as-nigerian-civil-war-novels