What is your “African book to inspire”?
It has to be Things Fall Apart – usual suspect, yes, I know, but I had to choose it. I first read it back in my student day and apart from being ‘the father of modern African writing’ Achebe was also simply a great story-teller. This is a book that has universal appeal whether you are African or not. For Africans of course it is particularly touching because it captures the complexities of an era that gave rise to the colonial governments in Africa and laid the ground for the subsequent struggles that ensued. The story of Okonkwo, a man striving for authenticity and wanting to maintain his identity in the face of a new and alien culture of subjugation is both moving and compelling. In this book, and all his others really, Achebe gave a voice to Africans for generations to come, including my own; for this, Things Fall Apart is my choice.
Zeinab Badawi, Broadcast Journalist