The Representation of Racial and Ethnic Conflict in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s “Americanah”

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The relevance of the research undertaken is connected with the current tendency of multiculturalism in fiction, which has been developing and transforming with the appearance of new writers, to be non-static. Many contemporary authors have already become impossible to be correlated with a specific national literature since they have had the experience of living in more than one country and have been the bearers of several cultural codes due to their encounter with diverse mentalities as well as the formation of their own identity in the situation of cultural interaction. Ipso facto, it is possible to dwell on a new turn in the development of multicultural fiction to date. Suchlike state of affairs provides an opportunity to claim the necessity of scholarly comprehension of the works by the new multicultural authors’ generation. One of them is Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (1977), an African American female writer, whose creativity can be characterized as a sui generis phenomenon formed by the ‘fusion’ of African, British and American literary traditions. Her novel Americanah (2013) serves as the material for the study, the purpose of which is to consider the most significant peculiarities in the representation of racial and ethnic conflict in the text of contemporary multicultural fiction. Basing on the complex of historical and literary and social and cultural methods, the paper analyses the specifics of artistic embodiment of racial and ethnic and, consequently, cultural clash that influences on the main heroine’s self-identification process. The fact that the image of the central female character, a Nigerian immigrant to the US, is autobiographical substantiates the relevancy of biographical research method having been involved. The results obtained allow concluding that the only way out for the character, whose position mirrors the one of the writer herself, is hybridization, which allows including the experience of existence in American reality as well as self-realization as a part and parcel of the heroine’s native history, nation, tradition and culture.

About the authors

Arina R. Shevchenko

Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0497-8359

Senior Lecturer at the Department of World Literature

18, Kremlevskaya st., Kazan, 420008, Russian Federation


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