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by Radical Tea Towel

Chinua Achebe Tea Towel


Chinua Achebe (1930-2013) was a Nigerian novelist, poet, and critic who is regarded as the dominant figure of modern African literature. His first novel and magnum opus, 'Things Fall Apart', showed the devastating effects of colonialism on a Nigerian village in the late 1800s. It occupies a pivotal place in African literature and remains the most widely studied, translated and read African novel. 

Achebe felt alienated by the depictions of Africa found in English and European novels, and identified Joseph Conrad as a particular foe. In an essay he wrote "I was not on Marlow's boat steaming up the Congo in 'Heart of Darkness'. Rather, I was one of those unattractive beings jumping up and down on the river bank making hard faces." He later said  "I realised how terribly, terribly wrong it was to portray my people, any people, from that attitude, from that point of view." 

This tea towel features a quote from Achebe riffing on an old African proverb. It metaphorically describes how dominant groups inscribe power through historical narrative: "Until the lions have their own historians, the history of the hunt will always glorify the hunter"

This tea towel is made from sturdy, half panama weave, unbleached cotton, and it's designed and made in the UK. The special inks used to print this design mean that its colour will last in the wash.

Use it for its original purpose or frame it and hang it on a wall.

Size: 48cm x 70cm.