Second Class Citizen [Buchi Emecheta] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The classic tale of a Nigerian woman who overcomes strict tribal . Second Class Citizen: The Point of Departure for. Understanding Buchi Emecheta’s Major Fiction. Abioseh Michael Porter, Drexel University. It has been said. Read “Second Class Citizen” by Buchi Emecheta with Rakuten Kobo. The classic tale of a Nigerian woman who overcomes strict tribal domination only to.

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Return to Book Page. Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta. A poignant story of a resourceful Nigerian woman who overcomes strict tribal domination of women and countless setbacks to achieve an independent life for herself and her children.

Paperbackpages. Published February 17th by George Braziller Inc. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Second Class Citizenplease sign up. What are The impacts of journeys in second class citizen by buchi emecheta?

See 2 questions about Second Class Citizen…. Lists with This Book. May 18, Sean Meriwether rated it really liked it Shelves: One wants to reach through the pages and shake this obviously intelligent woman and make her stand up on her own. Her upbringing in Africa has taught her that women are second class and do not matter as much as their husbands, they are only to take care of the home and have as many children as possible. Emecheta is an author who has been an inspiration to me; not only was she living in a foreign country raising five children and acting as the sole support for her family, but she still managed to have a career and write prolifically.

The time it takes for a normal human being to mature completely is something that is still very relative and sometimes, can feel like a mirage. Growing up mentally is a tedious process, more for the body, the physical self, that becomes accustomed to its surrounding.

The world outside is strange and weird, full of soul-crushing impediments. Crushed by her own bigger family since an early age, her willingness to learn ne The time it takes for a normal human being to mature completely is something that is still very relative and sometimes, can feel like a mirage. Crushed by her own bigger family since an early age, her willingness to learn never fades.

Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta

Nothing vouchsafes strength and power more than African women writers. This semi-autobiographical work emaciates the gap that is present between what we know and why we think it happens. Mar 26, Ashley rated it really liked it. Second Class Citizen really affected me. Whilst some cultural references bewildered me when I read its first few chapters because of my detachment from the Nigerian culture, the book hooked me right through. I loved and respected Adah for both her flaws and her strength in character; she is strong, naive, contradictory and honestly reflective and I could relate to her.

I could not imagine what my life would be if I were Adah. Reading the book made me feel grateful for all the privileges I had. I Second Class Citizen really affected me. It was heartbreaking for me to read about a young woman of about my age I am 22 struggling to educate herself, to bring up her five children and to deal with a parasitic, manipulative and abusive husband So my responses to the book were, ‘Wow! Mar 22, Ester rated it liked it Shelves: Very interesting but sad book.

I found it hard to put down.

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However, I found that plot picked up too fast at the end, with too many events happening in the last few chapters. The ending I found unsatisfactory – there needs to be a sequel, otherwise the book just feels incomplete. Dec 30, Sarah Anne rated it really liked it. I got Israel, my boyfriend got Nigeria. Second Class Citizen was my Christmas Eve book!


Buchi Emecheta is considered by many to be the a “pioneer among female Afric “She, who only a few months previously would have accepted nothing but the best, had by now been conditioned to accept inferior things.

Buchi Emecheta is considered by many to be the a “pioneer among female African writers. Writers such as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie have spoken of their admiration for Emecheta. She died in January I, rather shamefully, had never heard of Emecheta until I read this book. I’ll be making an effort to read more of her stuff from now on.

Second Class Citizen is semi-autobiographical. It tells the story of Adah, a Nigerian woman who comes to the UK to seek a new a life. It’s the s and her illusions are shattered pretty quickly when she’s confronted with the racism and classism of s England. On top of that she has to deal with her abusive husband who regards Adah’s thirst for independence as something shameful.

The parallels with Emecheta’s life are obvious. This is a sad but brilliant book that’s still relevant in even though it was published in the s.

Adah is a brilliant character and I wish Emecheta had written more about her. There are moments when you literally want to climb inside the book and fight on her behalf. I had to bear with clas first couple of chapters as they read a bit like a summary, but once she gets to chapter three things really kick into gear.

This book really made me think about my cultural assumptions and question them. The big theme here is the relationship between citizen and state.

To an extent I agree with her in finding the level of the UK’s involvement in private life to be bizarre. I know people who have social workers involved in the care of their children and they never question I had to bear with the first couple of chapters as they read a bit like a summary, but once she gets to chapter three things really kick into gear.

I know people who have social workers involved in the care of their children and they never question whether or not this is healthy. On the other hand, I never question that the NHS is a good thing so found the bit where she wants to pay more for her health care very thought provoking. Whether or not you agree with her really isn’t important though; it’s the outsider’s view and your questioning that’s important. There’s a great passage where she compares Nigerian and English churches: Cltizen Nigeria you commonly have extended families who work together congregationally to resolve problems.

In Britain it’s relatively common not to have functioning extended families and so the state acts to replace that function where poverty causes it to be become a problem. Clever stuff, and all told with a wry, dark humour. In the Ditch was published first, but chronologically takes place after Citizen. I read them in publication order and it really wasn’t a problem, though Ditch does have a spoiler of Citizen’s climax.

Jun 29, Stacy-Ann rated it it was amazing. This was a great read, I really enjoyed this book. I love the characters as well as the story line. One of the quotes I got from this book is ‘ A man who treated his mother like shit would always treat his wife like a shit’ I believe this to be secojd because I have come across it. It shows how life is like in Nigeria as a woman and what some of them cihizen through by having hard times living by the rules.

Jun 10, Doreen rated it really liked it. Second Class Citizen refers not only to Adah’s status as a Secnod immigrant in s England but also as a woman in a traditional culture who refuses to comply with conventional gender roles.

Second Class Citizen

From the onset of the book, we see Adah defy the implicit rules that define her cultural standing when she leaves her house at the age of five to attend school without telling her parents. The incident almost lands her mother in jail for neglect but Adah is granted her wish: This early scene plays itself out again and again throughout the book as Adah faces numerous emotional, social, and economic challenges both in her personal life with an Ibo man she marries who lacks drive and resents his wife’s ambition to the point of physical and emotional abuse and in her migration to England where she faces racism and sexism on a daily fmecheta.


Yet the book is not completely dreary. For one, despite the challenges Adah faces there are always aspects of her life that she secon grateful for –her love of learning and of satisfying work, her love for her children even when she is overwhelmed by having 3 very young children with a man who is an absent father and who cannot financially provide for them, and her eventual awakening to become a writer.

I do wish her dreams of being a writer were threaded earlier on in the novel as it suddenly becomes part of the plot to leave her husband who increasingly becomes a tyrant and abuser. Secondly, there is a craftiness to Adah that is highly appealing.

She is able to manipulate situations to her advantage and while this may ostensibly be unethical if one manipulates to have power over others but in her situation it is what women have been doing for centuries in order to make something of themselves by citkzen with tradition. Some of the most horrific parts of the book also display her strongest skill as as a writer, descriptive passages with a high level of emotional intensity that never becomes sentimental or melodramatic, particularly in dealing with her body as the space where the public and private intersect.

Social prohibitions around birth control including abortions but also something as benign as trying to use a diaphragm take on larger dimensions as she faces humiliating circumstances to acquire birth control only to have her husband find emecheya and tell his family back in Nigeria so that she is shamed for wanting control over her own body. Ctizen is also shamed by her obstetrician, also an immigrant who while somewhat sympathetic to her plight must abide by the patriarchal dictates of Francis and the social mores of England.

Other heart-breaking scenes involve being denied a place to live by white landlords not only because they are black but also because they had children and ending up in a run down house owned by a Nigerian and his Anglo wife.

The lack of any kind of support or advocacy groups or legal retribution for that matter is difficult to imagine even though I’m sure this kind of discrimination still continues.

Apr 10, Nancy rated it it was amazing Shelves: Stand in her way—and get smooshed! In the late s and early s, as part of the colonial educational system, outstanding students from places such as Nigeria traveled to Europe to study. During this time, there were poor education and lack of opportunities for the lower class societies, especially for women.

Therefore, in order to fight against the odds emeecheta move forward, class societies have to be able to adapt to different living environments through education and being able to hold tight to dreams.

Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta is an African novel that depicts the struggle for women to receive their education and surviving in a European white society while adapting to different religious beliefs and still following the beliefs of her own people.

In this story, Adah survived, not only for herself but also her dreams, while growing into a woman and moving from a high class position in her native Nigeria, a patriarchal society, to a very poor class in a predominantly white European society.