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Chinweizu Biography

(1943– ), Energy Crisis and Other Poems, Invocations and Admonitions, Toward the Decolonization of African Literature

Nigerian poet and critic, born in Eluama Isuikwuato, in Imo State, Eastern Nigeria, educated at Government College, Afikpo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the State University of New York at Buffalo. In the late 1970s, he taught Afro-American Studies at San Jose University, California. Chinweizu's statement that the ‘great unfinished business of African decolonization and development is my theme’ is central to his poetry and criticism. Energy Crisis and Other Poems (1978) and Invocations and Admonitions (1986) are among his collections of poems, which engage a range of moral and political themes with reference to the whole of Africa. His verse reflects the rich oral traditions of African writing espoused in Toward the Decolonization of African Literature (with O. Jemie and I. Madubuike; two volumes, 1980, 1981), his best-known critical work. Chinweizu's other publications include The West and the Rest of Us (1975), a passionately polemical critique of economic and cultural exploitation in the Third World, and the satirical writings collected in The Footrace (1981).

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Cheltenham Gloucestershire to Cockermouth Cumbria