There are books meant to be beautiful, there are books meant to make you think, there are books meant to make you feel. Americanah combines it all in its fight against the denial of racism.

Racism is real, even in this modern day and age it’s a subject that (with a little help from social media, where you can hide behind a mask quite easily) is shown across the globe. However, it is a complex matter, different to almost all recipients. Different countries and cultures have different opinions on what is racist and what is not, and it can be quite confusing to some. Americanah touches upon the complexities of race, class, gender, and mankind in general, and how those can differ in Africa and in America.

Difference
While many countries in this world have English as either the first, or the second official language, does not mean that all English is the same. In Americanah, the concept of Nigerian English is used to discuss the differences between the United States and Nigeria. The language differs, and therefore the meaning of things. And when meanings change, concepts change, and people change. Therefore, people are different, nurtured by their background and upbringings. This difference is one of the most important aspects of Americanah, as it shows the complexity of daily aspects of life that are sometimes taken for universal truths.

This concept of difference, through either ideas, language, or other cultural aspects, is the focus of Adichie’s book. It shows that not everything is as simple as it seems, through the eyes of the outsider. Even if that outsider is connected to the subject through other ways.

Continue reading