Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 3,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."

RIP

 The Concubine was my first encounter with Elechi Amadi’s work. A secondary school classmate lent me the book. I loved the genius of Amadi’s writing. Certain aspects of the story were familiar to someone like myself, a child brought up in an Igbo society. Perhaps, that’s why the novel has always enveloped me with nostalgia.

The novel left me with the realization that one could write stories about one’s cultures and traditions so passionately without holding back—in other to educate and to entertain.

As I grew older and became a writer, I realized that Amadi was an icon. I became aware of the role his work played in strengthening the African literary tradition. I began to search for his other works, enjoying The Great Ponds as much as I did The Concubine. When my dad gave me Sunset In Biafra, it made me hunger for more knowledge about the Biafran story. I became interested in the events that took place during the war and the many stories told about these events. That’s how I came to read Madiebo’s The Nigerian Revolution & The Biafran War.

On June 29, news broke of Amadi’s passing. He was said to have died in a Port Harcourt Hospital. The cause of his death remains undisclosed. It was a sad day for the African literary community as we mourned the loss of such a cherished literary soul.

Now the iroko has fallen, and if it were in the times of old, the Ikoro would sound for days and ear-tickling tales of Amadi’s greatness would be passed from mouth to mouth.

Though Amadi has joined his ancestors, we celebrate a long life spent enriching the world with the beauty and nutrition of art in its purity and authenticity, and for helping many young artists embrace their own narratives.

 

**********

About the Author:

Portrait-Udenwe-e1434978957315Obinna Udenwe is a prize winning Nigerian writer. He debut novel, a conspiracy thriller titled Satans and Shaitans, was published by Jacaranda last year. His works have appeared in the Kalahari Review, Tribe-write, Flair Magazine, Kadunaboy and in Literary & Travel Magazine. Satans and Shaitans, was published in October 2014. His short story was featured in the African Roar 2014
collection. When he is not traveling all over the world, he shares his time between Abakaliki and Enugu.

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

One Response to “Obituary | Beating the Ikoro in Tribute to Elechi Amadi | by Obinna Udenwe” Subscribe

  1. Amaka Anozie 2016/07/04 at 11:35 #

    2 days ago, I spent some time gisting a Kenyan friend about the Concubine. It was the least I could do. Rest in Peace Elechi Amadi.

Leave a Reply

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

Mabanckou, Mengestu, Shoneyin: The Caine Prize Recruits Big Names as 2018 Judges

Alain Mabanckou - Afropolitain

For its 2018 edition, the Caine Prize has recruited a host of big names for its panel of judges. Alain […]

Nnedi Okorafor Releases First Issue of “Black Panther: Long Live the King.” Long Live The Queen.

Black Panther - Long Live the King

The forthcoming Black Panther movie, starring Lupita Nyong’o, Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan, has generated a world of hype. […]

Paris Review Editor Lorin Stein Resigns After Accusations of Sexual Misconduct at Work

Lorin Stein

American critic Lorin Stein, editor of the prestigious, career-making literary journal Paris Review, has resigned from his job after accusations […]

Revisiting Childhood | Adedayo Adeyemi Agarau | Poetry

5570178377_ca5e11db25_o

in church today/ the pastor mentioned the twelve ways to burning in hell/ he did not mention love/ i began […]

Photos | Happy Birthday to Ainehi Edoro, Founder and Editor of Brittle Paper

Ainehi Edoro 2

One evening in mid-2010, in her apartment in Chicago, Ainehi Edoro, then a PhD student at Duke University, looked up […]

Lola Shoneyin Is a Cover Star on Guardian Life Magazine

lola

It’s almost two years since Uzodinma Iweala, author of Beasts of No Nation, graced the cover of Guardian Life Magazine, […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.