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What do you think of Chinua Achebe? Wole Soyinka?

Originally: What do you think of Chinua Achebe?

I think [Chinua Achebe] is one of the best writers Africa has churned out. What's your view?

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Soyinka writes prose too and both are poets as well. For me, this is a false comparison if the basis is who is greater. Both are great as writers and as citizens of Naija and Africa.The thing about creativity is that it manifests itself in different representational strategies-none of which is bad and all of which are effective when deftly deployed. This is why Soyinka appeals more as a dramatist and poet and less as a novelist while Achebe appeals more as a novelist. Soyinka is more temperamental of the two which is why storming a radio station or weighing in on road traffic madness are easy requisites to effecting change supplemental to his writings. Achebe has a softer mien that belies his effectiveness just as well. If the awards they have amassed between them is any yardstick, it would be fair to observe that while winning the Nobel is no mean achievement, it is hardly a threshold for greatness as a writer. This is why the Russian Tolstoy remains one of the worlds greatest writers but without the Nobel feather on his cap. Thus Soyinka's Nobel prize must never be acknowledged at the expense of Achebe.

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Achebe writes 'prose' while Soyinka does 'plays'.

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As a way of correction,Soyinka did not win the Nobel peace prize.He won the Nobel LITERATURE prize in 1986 and dedicated his prize to Africa.I remember that when Achebe was asked to comment about the prize,he called it "a European affair" and "a case of beating the white to his own game".Contrary to what some people think about Achebe,he did not suckle because of the prize.No,he didn't!I personally believe that what stands Achebe out from Soyinka and other new generation African writers is the SIMPLICITY of words with which he uses to create DEEP meanings.Read some of his novels,essays and war poems and you'll know what i am talking about.People like Achebe who do not use sophisticated language in writing may hardly win prizes but they surely write books we commonly term CLASSICS,THINGS FALL APART,for example.Soyinka is good in his mastery of the English language.He is a worthy Nobel laureate,a true activist for the Nigerian people and a worthy ambassador even in the "European game".Emmmmmm,talk about African literature anywhere in the world and the two of them easily come to mind.In short,I am proud of their efforts as my countrymen and deem both GREAT!

As a diversion,I think we need more classics like THINGS FALL APART and Nobel literature prizes like Soyinka's in Nigeria.Enough of all these sloppy writing I see demonstrated by our New Nigerian writers and let us get busy writing with more purpose and not just to display our vocabulary or create sensational stories.I bet you,a writer like Amos Tutuola makes more meaning than most of them even with his poor English!

I HAIL NAIRALAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

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I think both of them are good and great, I understand Achebe is so quiet that is why some people feels Soyinka has done much than him. If given me the opportunity to choose, I think Achebe comes first. This does not mean Soyinka is not great.

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They are both good in what they do,but personally i love wole soyinka's works to chinua's

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Jiya zakar good pix there.

But I expect you to post it on "Let's move picture of a thing here2 thread and put one in your profile.

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To my own piont view, I think Wole Soyinka is preferable.

If you ask me why I said this, I will tell you Wole Soyinka

has gone far interms of noble AWARD both locally and

internationally and also fighting against curruption in

Nigeria.

       

      Althoug Iam not saying Chinua Achebe is not good

but their record one will say Wole soyinka is preferable.

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that's the way it should be.

Even if you're given honey when you're moody, it won't make any meaning to you.

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Times when you are not in the right mood of reading, it switches you off.

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Yes that is what I like, when you become unpredictable.

It is of no use picking a novel and pre-empt how it will end or the actual meaning.

Just like our Nollywood movies.

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I think they are both good writers in different perspective but my problem with Wole Soyinka’s poems is that it does not give a straight meaning. It appears twisted. You got to be able to think very fast and be familiar with him for you to understand some of his poems.

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which of them is Igbo? i go with that one

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Well i dont really see the use for the prolonged debate on who is better...everyone has a right to his/her choice...i prefer achebe anyday,anytime...he is a book wizard.i dont know if u take time to analyze his figures of speech,and his various literary devices which he so perfectly uses to describe an event or something in the most appropraite way...i love achebe...hav u guys read "anthills of the savannah"?

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soyinka won the nobel peace prize.

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This serious...Achebe greater than Soyinka because he 'let the little children come unto me'

I love this!

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I have been reading Achebe since I was 6 years. In fact his book 'The flute', a short story for children, was the first Nigerian book I ever read. Before then I had only read 'Little Red Riddinghood', 'Snow white and the seven dwarfs',

'Sleeping Beauty', and others. All of them books written for white children by white writers. But Achebe changed that.

After that, my Mother saw the need to start buying African books. That was how I started reading 'Mazie the Obanje boy', 'Chike and the River', and all others. I think Achebe is better than Soyinka because, of the two of them, Achebe showed more interest in children, thereby building up young readers.

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Wole Soyinka is also an intelligent writer. His books are breath taking, and he truly deserves his Nobel prize.

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i think he is one of the greatest novelists/poet, to ever come out of nigeria. get to read the man of the people and see what it is made of.

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Is this a coincedence, i just finished reading 'things fall apart" well i decided to read it again because i was a kid when i read it and i wanted to re read it. well after i was done i was like ok what was so great about the novel?!! i mean it was all that captivating but i guess it just showed the other side of the story oh how the caucasians destroyed the life and culture of the africans. but i love okonkwo's strength, though i thought he would have been a lot more gentle to his family... and killing the kid.... well i guess that was how it was done then....

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It is not really fair to compare Soyinka and Achebe. But looking at the kind of awards they have received and the way they are perceived in local and international limelight, one has no option than to say Soyinka is more well known([I]please note I did not say greater[/I])

Soyinka has been a vocal critic of bad governments, he is vociferous in any cause he supports,he is a nobel laureate, he has courted controversies in his prime with the issue of Pyrates, his pro-Biafra stance and holding up a radio station.Many motorists would remember him for his Road Safety campaigns, he likes making an impression, his style of writing is wel to say the least a complex (I had a hard time following [I]The Interpreters[/I]...he is classy-let's give him that

Achebe on the other hand is quieter, he makes contributions to National issues when necessary (the recent being the rejection of a national merit award), he is the typical still water that runs deep. He has the ability to connect with his audience with his simple style of writing and plots ... some feel he should have been a nobel laureate too, which I think I agree with.

As you can see greatness is perhaps depends on a person's point of view.

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Achebe writes novels with simple english that makes it easy for the common man to understand. Not to mention rich African proverbs that are common features of his writings.

Things Fall Apart, No longer At Ease, Arrows of God, A Man of The People, etc are write-ups which cannot be easily forgotten by their readers.

To me, Achebe is one of the best things that happened to Nigeria. I like him.

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I guess he is one of the most talented writers to come out of Africa...he is the best in class for his own group.I don't feel its completely fair to compare Soyinka and Achebe...both are good novelists and poets, though styles differ.

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Things Fall Apart has been variously proclaimed as the best African novel of all time and I'll agree but he is not as prolific and consistent as Soyinka who in term of output is the best by far.

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