Arrow of God at 50: A celebration of the life and work of Chinua Achebe

21 May ‘14

4.30PM - 7.30PM

Venue: C1 and C2, Pathfoot building, University of Stirling

Chinua Achebe was a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor and critic, whose first novel Things Fall Apart remains the most widely read book in modern African literature.  His literary talent was acknowledged globally, and he was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of the University in 1974 by the University of Stirling - only the third university to recognise his achievements in this way.

Chinua Achebe died in March 2013, and 2014 sees the 50th anniversary of his highly acclaimed novel Arrow of God.  To mark this, the University welcomes you to an afternoon celebrating the life and work of Achebe.

Seminar: Dr Mpalive Msiska (4.30 - 5.15pm)
An alumnus of the University of Stirling and reader at Birkbeck University London, Dr Msiska will reassess Achebe's contribution to world literature.

Informal discussion (5.30 - 6.15pm)
Emeritus Professor Angela Smith
will Chair the discussion and set the scene by talking about the teaching of African literature at the University of Stirling.

Mara Menzies is a Scots-Kenyan professional storyteller and performer and will give readings from Arrow of God.  She is also an alumna of the University of Stirling.

John McCracken will speak about Achebe at Stirling and the conferral of his honorary degree in 1974.  He will also talk about the origins and growth of African studies at Stirling.

James Currey worked closely with Achebe on the African Writers' Series.  He will speak about Achebe as a writer and editor and his significance in promoting African literature on the world stage.

Drinks Reception (6.15 - 7.30pm)
Guests are invited to join us for drinks and for the unveiling of our Arrow of God installation: a selection of quotations stencilled on glass in the Pathfoot Building, as part of the University's "House of Words" initiative.

RSVP: To reserve a place, contact us on 01786 467033 or email:

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