Chimamanda Adichie: Americanah

Chimamanda Adichie: Americanah
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Nigerian author, Chimamanda Adichie, has recently been named among 50 greatest world leaders in the 2017 Fortune magazine ranking.

Adichie’s book Americanah recently won the One Book, One New York campaign spearheaded by the New York City Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment. The voting which took place in February were both online and at interactive digital kiosks on subway platforms.

Americanah was the book most New Yorkers wanted to read, as 50,000 voters who participated in the campaign voted for it. “New Yorkers were encouraged to form their own book clubs and discussions around the book, which detailed the story of a Nigerian couple that left military-ruled Nigeria for different cities in the Western world and later reunited in a democratic Nigeria. Ifemelu, the protagonist, headed for America, where her life as an immigrant changed her perspective on race and identity.”

Before being reunited in their homeland, the female protagonist, Ifemelu, was forced to confront new issues of race and class in the United States, and her lover, Obinze, blocked from joining her due to post-9/11 travel restrictions, struggled for dignity as an undocumented immigrant in London.

In partnership with the digital library and subscription service, Scribd, the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment will provide free 90-day access to Americanah audiobook through June. It would host events like film screenings and panel discussions to drum up excitement about the book and get New Yorkers talking about it in the upcoming months. Other books voted on included Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, The Sellout by Paul Beatty and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Image credit: independent.co.uk

Adichie’s first novel Purple Hibiscus was long-listed for the Man Booker prize; her second, Half of a Yellow Sun, won the Orange prize. Now her third, the acclaimed Americanah, has beaten Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch to win the Nigerian author one of most prestigious literary prizes in the US, the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) award.

 


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