Acclaimed Author, Brown Prof. Dead at 82

Mar 22, 2013

Chinua Achebe, the David and Marianna Fisher University Professor and Professor of Africana studies
Credit Mike Cohea/ Brown University

Chinua Achebe, author of the classic novel "Things Fall Apart," has died at the age of 82. The Nigerian-born Achebe was a professor in Brown's Africana Studies Department.


Brown University officials have released a statement, excerpted below:

Achebe, the David and Marianna Fisher University Professor and professor of Africana studies, joined the Brown faculty in September 2009.

Best known for his novels and essays which critique postcolonial Nigerian politics and society as well as the impact of the West on Africa, Achebe was widely acknowledged as “godfather” to a generation of African writers. His first novel, Things Fall Apart, is the most widely read work of African fiction, having sold more than 12 million copies in English alone. It has been translated into 50 languages.

Among his activities at Brown was the annual Achebe Colloquium on Africa, an international gathering of scholars, policymakers, elected officials, writers, and others with a shared interest in current-day African affairs.

“The colloquia he organized at Brown attracted a grand array of guests and effectively demonstrated how the humanities can build understanding by drawing from and encouraging a variety of perspectives,” said Brown University President Christina H. Paxson. “We were honored to have him among us.”

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you.