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433 pages, Hardcover
First published September 12, 2006
"Starvation propelled aid organizations to sneak-fly food into Biafra at night since both sides could not agree on routes. Starvation aided the careers of photographers. And starvation made the International Red Cross call Biafra its gravest emergency since the Second World War."
"Grief was the celebration of love, those who could feel real grief were lucky to have loved. But it was not grief that Olanna felt, it was greater than grief. It was stranger than grief."
"The real tragedy of our postcolonial world is not that the majority of people had no say in whether or not they wanted this new world; rather, it is that the majority have not been given the tools to negotiate this new world."
Mindanao on-going. If you look at the map of the Philippines, there is a big island at the southern part of the archipelago. It is called Mindanao. Since many decades back, there is a secessionist movement composed of the Muslim leaders, the Moro National Liberation Front, based in that island who want to secede Mindanao from the Philippines. Reason: religion. The island is mostly populated by Muslims while the rest of the country is inhabited by Christians with Catholics comprising 85% of them.So, you can see that my plate is full already of interesting stories of on-going Asian secession movements as well as those that have succeeded already. So, reading about one in Africa - Biafra - was not really that interesting for me.
Taiwan on-going. Taiwan used to be part of Mainland China until the defeat and expulsion of the ruling Kuomintang ROC government by the Communist Party of China in 1949.
Tibet on-going. Tibetan Independence Movement asserts that Tibet has been historically independent from People’s Republic of China. Tibetan diaspora in countries like India and the United States and by celebrities in the US and Europe support this with the Dalai Lama becoming the symbol of their cause.
Those who have seceded already but whose stories captured the attention of the world were: East Timor secession from Indonesia in 2002, Kashmir from India in 1989 and the expulsion of Singapore from the Malayan Federation in 1965. Since these three happened during my lifetime,I have read many stories about them on newspapers or novels with any of them used as backdrop.
She unfurled Odenigbo's cloth flag and told them what the symbols meant. Red was the blood of the siblings massacred in the North, black was for mourning them, green was for the prosperity Biafra would have, and, finally, the half of a yellow sun stood for the glorious future.
“Red was the blood of the siblings massacred in the North, black was for mourning them, green was for the prosperity Biafra would have, and, finally, the half of a yellow sun stood for the glorious future.”
"The world was silent when many died. But now it will have to listen, as the dead tell their story from beyond the grave."
"The world was silent when many died. But now it will have to listen, as the dead tell their story from beyond the grave."Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie writes in detail and manages to keep the reader glued to the book. For those who want to understand what the African Renaissance is all about, this is the kind of book that will shed some valuable light on the current challenges being addressed. It is huge, brutal, dangerous and probably neverending.
From the blurb: "With effortless grace, celebrated author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie illuminates a seminal moment in modern African history: Biafra's impassioned struggle to establish an independent republic in southeastern Nigeria during the late 1960s.By the time the true message in the book is revealed it is too late to withdraw from it if you are not into this kind of genre. It is history, reality and fiction intermixed masterfully by a kind-spirited author. The book is gripping. It touches all senses.