Novel “Anthills of the Savannah” by Ch. Achebe as a Metaphor of the Actual Nigerian Society

Olesya Shtanyuk


An example of the postcolonial literature – the novel “Anthills of the Savannah” by Ch. Achebe is analyzed. The peculiarity of the artistic manner of reconstruction of reality produced by postcolonial situation is investigated. The specific narration – the introduction into the text of many narrators like in the Western postmodern literary practice certainly complicates the reception of the text. Ch. Achebe touches upon a many topical problems of the modern Nigeria. It is stressed that “Anthills of the Savannah” is a kind of dystopia which metaphorically shows the then Nigerian society. In this novel the topic of language becomes especially significant. Here the language serves as a carrier of symbols but not the form of articulation. English language becomes here a convenient adapter that represents the symbolic culture of the Igbo people. The author analyzes the devaluation of the ontological content of a“word” as a paradigm. It is emphasized that formerly the Igbo people prized “word” as a carrier of some sacred contents, spiritual media. But the heroes of this novel just manipulate the words and use them as a tool to achieve their own goals. By this text Ch. Achebe, an active politician and philosopher reflects on the ways a new Nigerian society construction and development. Though the new Nigerian nation is English-speaking, its worldview is inherently fermented by the authentic mentality.


Nigeria; Igbo; postcolonial mentality; dystopia; dual heritage; identity; English language; Ch. Achebe


Achebe Ch. The Anthills of the Savannah. London, 1989, 244 p.

Achebe Ch. The Trouble with Nigeria. Enugu, 1998, 88 p.

Ezenwa-Ohaeto. Chinua Achebe: A Biography. Bloomington, 1997, 352 p.

Gikandi S. Reading Chinua Achebe: Language & Ideology in Fiction. Oxford, 1991, 166 p.

Okechukwu Ch. Achebe the Orator: The Art of Persuasion in Chinua Achebe's Novels. Westport, Conn, 2001, 192 p.

The Chinua Achebe Encyclopedia. Westport, CT, 2003, 318 p.

GOST Style Citations

Achebe Ch. The Anthills of the Savannah / Chinua Achebe. – London : Anchor Books, 1989. – 244 p.


Achebe Ch. The Trouble with Nigeria / Chinua Achebe. – Enugu : Fourth Dimension Publ., 1998. – 88 p.


Ezenwa-Ohaeto. Chinua Achebe: A Biography / Ezenwa-Ohaeto. –Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1997. – 352 p.


Gikandi S. Reading Chinua Achebe: Language & Ideology in Fiction / Simon Gikandi. – Oxford : James Currey Publishers, 1991. – 166 p.


Okechukwu Ch. Achebe the Orator: The Art of Persuasion in Chinua Achebe's Novels / Ch. Okechukwu. – Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, 2001. – 192 p.


The Chinua Achebe Encyclopedia / [ed. by M. Keith Booker]. – Westport, CT : Greenwood press, 2003. – 318 p.

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Pytannia literaturoznavstva
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