"Civil Peace" by Chinua Achebe

Essay by mustajabHigh School, 12th grade August 2006

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"Civil Peace" is a short story which was written in the 20th century by Chinua Achebe. Nigeria was torn apart by a civil war, and currently in Nigeria the country is united after the bloody war. The author tries to encourage his native Nigerian people with a short story that is filled with optimism. Chinua Achebe's short story can be analyzed in regard to the three important literary elements which are characterization, tone, and conflict.

Achebe's goal as a writer was to depict his people. He learned about his own people, who were once a part of the Igbo civilization by "interviewing older people and reading the writings of colonial administration missionaries" ("Short Stories for Students Volume" pg. 17). Once the civil war began, he decided to shift gears, from writing novels, and focus on poetry and short stories, which one is "Civil Peace." Achebe was born in 1930 in a village in eastern Nigeria. His father worked for a Church Missionary Society. Achebe's early education was through the society's school, Achebe began learning English at the age of 8 (Wikipedia pg. 1). Once he was 14, he became one of the few selected to attend the Ibadan University, he studied English literature. After he graduated, Achebe had a short stint as a teacher. A year later he became a producer for the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation, where he remained for 12 years ("Short Stories for Students Volume" pg. 17). After his producing days, he decided to become a full time author, where he published a few novels, short stories, and essays on politics and literature. In 1994, Achebe had to flee Nigeria because of the threat of being jailed. He moved to the United States and is currently a professor. In 1999, he was...