This study evaluates Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus and Half of a Yellow Sun as vociferous protestations and call for redress concerning diverse forms of historical and contemporary misrule, inequalities and injustices in the Nigerian society and beyond. Thus Adichie is not just a feminist but also a humanist who is genuinely concerned with the predicaments of the subaltern in the hands of their powerful oppressors. Using New Historicism as a theoretical parameter, the study posits that several factors that resulted to conflict situations and discontent in the past in certain societies are still prevalent in contemporary times, hence the continuous agitations from various ethnic nationalities and sections of such domains, particularly in Nigeria, Adichie’s country of birth. This demonstrates that injustice and oppression perpetrated anywhere can only be laid to rest when they are sincerely redressed with nothing else but justice. The study, therefore, avers that several unresolved historical injustices and ills raised in the novels be resolutely redressed by the contemporary leaderships in those jurisdictions, and where necessary make appropriate reparations, restitution or tender decisive apologies. Doing so in the right manner will invariably contribute to global peace and stability. This implies that for lasting peace to reign in the concerned domains, several issues bordering on historical and modern-day injustices, misrule, human rights abuses, ethnic, racial and religious rivalry, etc., of which the novelist has consistently raised eloquent protestations through her fictions under study should be given serious positive attention and redress in the interest of all.
Keywords: Protest, Half of a Yellow Sun, Nigeria, Literature, Injustice
Abdullah, R. H. (2018). “The role of the literary and social protest in selected novels of John Steinbeck in the global supply chain”. International Journal of Supply Chain Management, 7(5), 1-9.
Achebe, C. (1983). The trouble with Nigeria. Enugu: Fourth Dimension Publishers.
Adichie, C. N. (2006). Purple hibiscus. Lagos: Farafina.
Adichie, C. N. (2006). Half of a yellow sun. Lagos: Farafina.
Akingbe, N. (2012). “Writing protest obliquely: Articulating the burden of a nation in Chinua Achebe’s Anthhills of the Savannah”. Transnational Literature. 5(1), 1-17. Asaba massacre. Wikipedia. https://en.m.wikipedia.org.
Audu, B. (2015). Tiv (Nigeria) riots of the 1960, 1964: The principle of minimum force and counter insurgency. https://www.academia.edu.
Brannigam, J. (1998). New historicism and cultural materialism. New York: St. Martins Press.
Bressler, C. E. (1999). Literary criticism: An introduction to theory and practice (2nd ed). New Jersy: Prentice Hall.
Ezeonu, I. & Korieh, C. J. (2010). “Perspectives on Biafra: Fact, fiction and memory”. In Korieh, C., Ezeonu, I. eds. Remembering Biafra: Narrative, history, and memory of the Nigeria-Biafra war. Owerri: Goldline and Jacobs Publishers. pp.1-16.
Greenblatt, S. (1980). Renaissance self-fashioning: From more to Shakespeare. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Iheka, C. N. (2010). “Representation of the Nigerian civil war in fiction”. Korieh, C., Ezeonu, I eds. Remembering Biafra: narrative, history and memory of the Nigeria-Biafra war. Owerri: Goldline and Jacobs Publishers. pp. 70-89.
Ike, J. O. (2014). New historicist reading of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s purple hibiscus.(Unpublished barchelors degree dissertation). Niger Delta University.
Mountz, W. (2014). “The Congo crisis: A reexamination (1960-1965)”. The Journal of Middle East and Africa, 5(2), 151-165. https://doi.org/10.1080/21520844.2014.930712.
Nigerian army promotes 81 division commander, Ahmed Taiwo who claimed no killing occurred at Lekkitollgate despite evidence. (2020, November 27). Sahara Reporters. Saharareporters.com.
Nweke, B. O. (2010). “Exhuming the ghost of a troubled present: History and survival in Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun”. In Korieh C., Ezeonu, I. eds. Remembering Biafra: Narrative, history and memory of the Nigeria-Biafra war. Owerri: Goldline and Jacobs Publishers. pp.39-54.
Oza, P. (2020). History of protest literature in India: Trails from the Bhakti literature. www.researchgate,net. Silverman, J. (2020, March 19). Plans for an Asaba massacre memorial are stirring passions in Nigeria. The Conversation. theconversation.com.
Stauffer, J. (2006). “Foreword”. In Zoe, T ed. American protest literature. Cambridge: The Belknap Press. pp.iii-xiii.