Abdallah Abormealeh

PhD student

Research Overview

The main interest of this thesis is to examine the theme of self-destruction and identity crisis as a resulting phase of the change Nigeria severely underwent during and after British colonisation. By focusing on his fiction in particular, whose endings are often concerned with a sense of tragedy, Chinua Achebe’s Igbo characters seem to respond to this change in different ways trying to create an existential free will of choice ending up having a sense of tragedy under the influence of British colonial power. While some would deny this change, unsuccessfully trying to live according to the older and traditional standards of life, others try to adapt to the new rules that have become to govern their African traditional life. A third group would completely go against the old system, embracing the very creation of new rules cultures. As dichotomies of whites/blacks, colonisers/colonised, masters/slaves, Self/Other, consciousness/unconsciousness, responsibility/carelessness...etc are always topics of critical heated controversies, this thesis develops a keen interest in cross-cultural, colonial and existential contributions by mainly arousing three overarching questions: To what extent can Whites’ superiority over Blacks’ inferiority lead to the latter’s sense of destruction either physically or spiritually? What is the impact of awareness upon unawareness in predetermining the destiny of this sense of destruction? Finally, in what ways can colonisation define identities as culturally hybrid? The main theoretical approaches of this thesis, therefore, are Edward Said’s Orientalism, Out of Place, and Culture and Imperialism, Homi Bhabha’s The Location of Culture, and Martin Heidegger’s Being and Time.