Things Fall Apart

By Chinua Achebe

Winter Weekend 2021

Once a year we bring people together around one big book.  When we can, we gather in person to share a meal, discuss the book with each other, and interact with scholars and artists who help us deepen our understanding of the book’s context and implications.

This year we will of necessity be convening online, and we are working hard to take full advantage of the opportunities that gathering online can offer.  We aim to make this year’s exploration of Things Fall Apart inspiring, thought-provoking, challenging, moving – a chance to engage with each other, with scholars, and with the book in new and genuinely exciting ways.

Things Fall Apart, Nigerian author Chinua Achebe’s first novel, is a classic of international literature and required reading for students worldwide. The novel tells two overlapping stories, both of which center around Okonkwo, a “strong man” of an Ibo village in Nigeria. The first  traces Okonkwo’s fall from grace with the tribal world in which he lives. The second story concerns the clash of cultures and the destruction of Okonkwo’s world through the arrival of aggressive, proselytizing European missionaries.

Stay tuned for early registration, sponsorship, and scholarship opportunities.

Things Fall Apart may well be Africa’s best-loved novel … For so many readers around the world, it is Chinua Achebe who opened up the magic casements of African fiction.”

Kwame Anthony Appiah

“The power and majesty of Chinua Achebe’s work has, literally, opened the world to generations of readers. He is an ambassador of art, and a profound recorder of the human condition.”

Michael Dorris

“[Achebe is] a powerful voice for cultural decolonization.”

The Village Voice


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Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this program do not necessarily
represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.