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Research Article | Volume 4 Issue 5 (September, 2023)
Historical Cycles and Myths: Juxtaposing Histories - Chinua Achebe and George Lamming
Under a Creative Commons license
Open Access
Published
Sept. 25, 2023
Abstract
This paper shall examine the concept of historical cycles and myths in the works of Chinua Achebe and George Lamming by juxtaposing their first two works; which include: Things Fall Apart (1958) and Arrow of God (1964) for Achebe, as well as In the Castle of My Skin (1953) and The Emigrants (1955) for Lamming. A side-by-side juxtaposition of these works reveal that cycles of history and the mythic form of literature are vehicles both writers use to achieve their grand purposes of extricating, re-assembling and re-rendering of the histories of their people. In the novels under our study, both Achebe and Lamming have explored the symbiotic relationship between history and literature as well as their correlation with their peoples’ experiences to make their assertions on the life and times of their people. Using the tools of historical, post-colonialism and comparison theories, this paper attempts to establish how each writer fares when the narratives of his novels are put to the historical test. A recourse to secondary materials and deep textual analysis of these works would allow us form a conclusion that Jean Starobinksi puts succinctly when he stated that: “the past can never be evoked except with reference to a present” (74).
Keywords
Cycles and Myths
Juxtaposing
Chinua Achebe and George Lamming
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