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Chinua Achebe quotes

People say that if you find water rising up to your ankle, that's the time to do something about it, not when it's around your neck.

In fact, I thought that Christianity was very a good and a very valuable thing for us. But after a while, I began to feel that the story that I was told about this religion wasn't perhaps completely whole, that something was left out.

The last four or five hundred years of European contact with Africa produced a body of literature that presented Africa in a very bad light and Africans in very lurid terms. The reason for this had to do with the need to justify the slave trade and slavery.

A man who makes trouble for others is also making trouble for himself.

Art is man's constant effort to create for himself a different order of reality from that which is given to him.

But I liked Yeats! That wild Irishman. I really loved his love of language, his flow. His chaotic ideas seemed to me just the right thing for a poet. Passion! He was always on the right side. He may be wrongheaded, but his heart was always on the right side. He wrote beautiful poetry.

A functioning, robust democracy requires a healthy educated, participatory followership, and an educated, morally grounded leadership.

The only thing we have learnt from experience is that we learn nothing from experience.

Oh, the most important thing about myself is that my life has been full of changes. Therefore, when I observe the world, I don't expect to see it just like I was seeing the fellow who lives in the next room.

What a country needs to do is be fair to all its citizens - whether people are of a different ethnicity or gender.

The problem with leaderless uprisings taking over is that you don't always know what you get at the other end. If you are not careful you could replace a bad government with one much worse!

I don't care about age very much.

The damage done in one year can sometimes take ten or twenty years to repair.

Once a novel gets going and I know it is viable, I don't then worry about plot or themes. These things will come in almost automatically because the characters are now pulling the story.

I think back to the old people I knew when I was growing up, and they always seemed larger than life.

Nigeria has had a complicated colonial history. My work has examined that part of our story extensively.

Presidents do not go off on leave without telling the country.

Stories serve the purpose of consolidating whatever gains people or their leaders have made or imagine they have made in their existing journey thorough the world.

I've had trouble now and again in Nigeria because I have spoken up about the mistreatment of factions in the country because of difference in religion. These are things we should put behind us.

The people you see in Nigeria today have always lived as neighbors in the same space for as long as we can remember. So it's a matter of settling down, lowering the rhetoric, the level of hostility in the rhetoric is too high.