Unfolding Dialogue: Teaching Achebe’s Fiction

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Pedagogical methods rooted and implemented in a mode of domination, reflecting, indeed, colonial mentalities, contradict the affirmation of equality and dignity projected in global literatures, including the work of Achebe. His writings teach us how to teach him, guiding instructors to reach beyond authoritarian methods. His fiction and essays are the foundations for this chapter’s affirmation and illustrations of classroom dialogue. One Igbo proverb, for example, helps illuminate the power of dialogue between teacher and students as well as the effectiveness of comparison in the study of literature: “Wherever something stands, another thing stands beside it.” Achebe’s varied presentations of this proverb remind us that the world is constructed through complementary and contradictory elements. Placing literary works in a comparative relationship generates insights that often do not arise when the focus is trained on a single work alone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAfrican Histories and Modernities
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages23
StatePublished - 2017

Publication series

NameAfrican Histories and Modernities
ISSN (Print)2634-5773
ISSN (Electronic)2634-5781

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • History
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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