First of all, you all missed an awesome Igbo language workshop.  The teacher was really engaging and we learned a super cool song that translates to, “clap, clap again, clap for the smart ones.” We also had delicious meat pies.

          My goal in life is to meet Chimamanda Adichie.   My goal for the summer is to read all of her books. 

          I think that it might have been interesting to read Jumping Monkey Hill at the beginning of the semester because it challenges how we think about the “African Writer” and invites a lot of discussion and debate.   The setting for this short story set up a perfect framework for the awkwardness and in a way conflict between the “African Writers” and Edward.  The resort shows how white tourists see Africa, as an exotic place with exotic animals.  It is an imitation of Africa, or a single story of Africa, that too many people are willing to buy into.  The same awkward tension that exists in the relationship between the resort and the ‘real’ Africa exists between the ‘African writers’ and Edward.  One side is trying to endorse what the rest of the world wants to believe is ‘authentically African’, and the other side is trying to tell real stories about real life.   The best part is when Ujunwa sticks it to Edward and is like this IS a true story so fuck you.  I also really like when Adiche lists the participants of the workshop.  It’s such a random sampling of “Africans” that British people picked out to be a part of this workshop.  There is no possible way to get a complete picture of what life is like in Africa.  It’s such a huge continent that encompasses such a wide variety of people, we should stop trying to put it into a box and stop generalizing and stereotyping. 

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About Bethany

I am a Junior at American University, pursuing a degree in International Studies. I am particularly interested in development in Africa, especially when it comes to education. I am going abroad to Senegal for the spring semester and will be writing about my adventures here.

3 responses »

  1. audreyvorhees says:

    Didn’t you read Purple Hibiscus for your book review? I think you may have already completed your summer goal…

  2. Bethany says:

    my heart is also broken

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