Where Are the ‘Daughters’ of Emecheta? Tracing Buchi Emecheta’s Influence

Buchi Emecheta was an acclaimed author of more than 20 books whose writing, according to Margaret Busby, ‘epitomized female independence’.

Editor’s note: This essay is available in print in our latest issue on The Life and Legacy of Buchi Emecheta. Buy the issue here.

In a creative atmosphere suffused by the male writer’s projection of women, the earliest female writers in Africa began to redefine—with authenticity—the ways in which women and their world could be represented, presented, interpreted and reconstructed. Expectedly, creative output by this generation of emergent writers, beginning with Flora Nwapa, Grace Ogot, Mariama Bâ, Ama Ata Aidoo, Bessie Head, and including Buchi Emecheta, ventilated a wide range of womanly concerns.

It is in this regard that Charles Nnolim’s scathing description of Buchi Emecheta as the ‘rambunctious daughter of (Flora) Nwapa’ not only acknowledges the creative debt to a past literary tradition and the thematic concerns set by Nwapa. It also calls the attention of readers, critics and members of the literary community to an emergent perspective by the newer writer, Emecheta, and her prospects of setting new trends on ideology and style to be emulated by others...

This essay features in our latest print issue, ‘The Triumph of Buchi Emecheta’ and is only available to paying subscribers. To subscribe, buy a subscription plan here from $1.99 / month (students) and $5.99 / month (non-students). Already a subscriber? log in.