Purple Hibiscus: A Postcolonial Feminist Reading

Musa Dube

Abstract


The article investigates how Purple Hibiscus utilizes intertextuality and explores the intersection of class, gender, race, postcoloniality and violence in a context of theological imagination represented by two siblings, who express their Roman Catholic faith differently.   The character of Papa Eugene, whose extreme religiosity and violence pervades the book, is depicted as a colonized subject, who embodies epistemic violence of a colonial past. The decolonizing postcolonial feminist perspective of the book is best modeled by the character of Aunty Ifeoma and how she expresses her Christian faith as an African woman. Whereas, Aunty Ifeoma is an articulate intellectual, women of different status are shown to use different means of resisting patriarchy and violence in the quest for liberating relationships, thereby modeling various expressions of feminist agency. This paper, therefore, explores the intersectionality of gender, class, race, religion, postcoloniality and power in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s debuting novel, Purple Hibiscus set in a political context of a military coup in Nigeria.

Keywords


Chimamanda N. Adichie, James H. Cone, Colonial Violence, Decolonization, African Christianity



DOI: https://doi.org/10.7832/46-2-311

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