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THE FLORA NWAPA CLUB NEWSLETTER JOHN JAY COLLEGE OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK

AFRICAN LITERATURE ASSOCIATION, USA

RECOGNIZING EXCELLENCE IN AFRICANA LITERATURE
2009-2010

Volume 2, No.3

PRESIDENT BonJean Boucka John Jay College, CUNY
bonjean.boucka@jjay.cuny.edu

THE FLORA NWAPA CLUB
Congratulates the
WINNER OF THE 2009 FLORA NWAPA SOCIETY AWARD

VICE-PRESIDENT Fanieda Jabo John Jay College, CUNY
fjabo718@aim.com

SECRETARY Katharina Rollins John Jay College, CUNY
quebonita24@mac.com

TREASURER Tyler Garvey John Jay College, CUNY
tyler.garvey@jjay.cuny.edu FACULTY ADVISOR/EDITOR

Dr. Marie A. Umeh Department of English John Jay College, CUNY
Msumeh@aol.com

FACULTY EDITOR Professor Marvie Brooks Lloyd George Sealy Library John Jay College, CUNY
mbrooks@jjay.cuny.edu

DESKTOP PUBLISHER Zenobia Petersen
zenobiap53103@yahoo.com

CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Rev. (Dr.) Peter Igwilo
pinalexint@yahoo.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Piyanuch Panichpisal
nan_piyanuch@hotmail.com

The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter

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Volume 4, No. 1

INTRODUCING THE 2009 RECIPIENT OF THE FLORA NWAPA LITERARY AWARD: PROFESSOR CATHERINE ACHOLONU-OLUMBA
by Dr. Marie Umeh Welcome to the 2009 Harlem Book Fair‘s Literary Awards Gala Celebrating Africana Authors and Publishers. Introducing Professor Catherine Acholonu-Olumba—Nigeria‘s Culture Ambassador of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and former Special Advisor to the Nigerian President, from 1999-2002, whom I met for the first time in Nigeria at the famous Ife Book Fair at the University of Ife in Ile-Ife, Oyo State, in the eighties, is definitely not an easy task. Professor Catherine Acholonu‘s gifts vary. For instance, I would like to tell you that she is a poet, but she is not just a poet; she is also a playwright. But that‘s Dr. Marie Umeh presents the Flora Nwapa Literary Award to not all, she is foremost a literary critic and essayist whose brilliant Professor Catherine Acholonu-Olumba on July 17, 2009. theories have been quoted in many books across the globe. And that‘s not all—for she is an avid researcher into African cultural sciences. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba, like Flora Nwapa, is one of Africa‘s first few women publishers. She has added yet another feather to her cap in the pantheon of pioneers in becoming the first Nigerian woman to have a research center named after her. The Catherine Acholonu Research Center, based in Abuja, Nigeria, is a lodestar in African cultural research and information technology. In the 1980s, Catherine Acholonu - Olumba conducted a two year field research that led to the discovery of the native Igbo roots of the American slave and later abolitionist Olaudah Equiano, aka Gustava Vassa, who is the first African-American published autobiographer, essayist and fiction writer. The success of that research earned her a Fulbright Scholarship and a sponsored lecture tour of American universities, as an International Visitor. In 1990/91, as a Fulbright Scholar/Writer-in-Residence at the Westchester Consortium for International Studies, Catherine Acholonu was a Visiting Professor at Manhattanville College, Iona College, Marymount College and the College of New Rochelle, in New York State. It is on record that Professor Acholonu was the first faculty member ever to be given a reception party by the entire Black student community at the Colleges. At Manhattanville College, in Purchase, New York, she initiated the AfMax Rodriguez, Founder, The Phillis rican-American Studies Program and began another pioneering research project Wheatley Awards and The Harlem Book Fair. which resulted in the seminal work – They Lived Before Adam : pre - historic origins of the Igbo—the never been—ruled (Ndi Igbo since 1.6 million B. C.) – a work that today is earning her global recognition and the Flora Nwapa Literary Award at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Professor Catherine Acholonu– Olumba has pioneered great movements in literature and scholarship, one of them, her second groundbreaking work after The Igbo Roots of Olaudah Equiano : an anthropological research —is a book on African Gender Studies, entitled Motherism: The Afro-centric Alternative to Feminism, published in 1995. This book can be defined as Africa‘s first fully articulated Theory of Feminist Consciousness. They Lived Before Adam is her 16th book and the second full-length book in a new series in which she and her team of researchers are rediscovering and transcribing the ancient stone inscriptions of Pre-Historic Africans and their buried contributions to world civilizations. Ladies and gentlemen – Professor Catherine Acholonu - Olumba. Let‘s stand and give her a big welcome!

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Volume 4, No. 1

UNITED NATIONS FORUM OF ARTS AND CULTURE FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CONVENTION TO COMBAT DESERTIFICATION

THE FLORA NWAPA LITERARY AWARD ACCEPTANCE SPEECH BY PROFESSOR CATHERINE ACHOLONU-OLUMBA LEAD-RESEARCHER AND LEAD-AUTHOR OF THEY LIVED BEFORE ADAM.
I remember my mother, Chief Mrs. Josephine Olumba, who chose to pass into the next world on the last day of September, 2009, in the very same moments when They Lived Before Adam was making its entry into the world. In a way the book is the reincarnation of my mother, a woman who never missed an opportunity to make a grand entrance. It is just as well, because They Lived Before Adam, the book that has earned me Schomburg Center‘s coveted Flora Nwapa Literary Award is a book inspired by the Eternal Mother of all life. The book seeks to bring humanity back to the basics, to recapture the true essence of things, the truth that has been lost, the knowledge that has been subverted. The inspiration for this work was provided by the world celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Chinua Achebe‘s Things Fall Apart – one of the greatest novels ever written. Achebe‘s Things Fall Apart is an apt representation of the authentic African novel vis-à-vis the farce that is Joseph Conrad‘s Heart of Darkness. It is a living testimony of the state of identity oblivion that befell all colonized nations of the Southern Hemisphere as a direct outfall of religious and sociopolitical imperialism. Things fell apart all over the African continent, and the center could no longer hold, but as we all know, what one sows, one also reaps. The Chaos Theory of New Physics says that what happens in one half of a circle must be replicated on the other half of the circle, for force moves in cycles and all motion is cyclical. Accordingly, things have also fallen apart in the house of the identity terminators – our erstwhile colonial masters. In a paper I delivered in 2002 to the Association of Nigerian Authors, titled ―Africa: the New Frontier: Towards A Truly Global Literary Theory for the 21st Century,‖ I made the point that the Western World has perfected the use of noise as a metaphor of power, and that its news media uses a cacophony of ear-rending noises to drown out the truth by keeping the so-called Third World – that is us – silent; that as far as we, Africans are concerned there is no such thing as dialogue among nations, more like a monologue where the super powers talk and the rest just listen and say nothing. For centuries, the nations and peoples of the South, the Third World have been treated as the silent, female ‗partners‘ of the West in international relations, to be seen but never to be heard. Their ageless philosophies and the best practices that created the classical civilizations of yester-years, have along with their art, cultures and traditions, been bottled up in museums in the West. Their indigenous sciences, have together with their new scientific endeavors, their emerging literatures, their old and new knowledge been cut off from the global information traffic by those who make it their business to decide who gets heard and who does not. Africa is thus of interest to no one unless we are dancing or showcasing our handicrafts and body-adornments. For example, CNN refused to attend our book launchings in Abuja (Nigeria) in March, Washington, D.C. in April and Enugu in June, with the excuse that our book launch was an ‗Igbo event.‘ This is a classical example of silencing a continent. Imagine if every other international news medium had said the same thing.

writ- They Lived Before Adam takes us back to the beginnings. and confirm what Geneticists have long proved. ancient Egyptian. and is now paying dearly for its arrogance. that he left Africa with a high degree of wisdom and natural intelligence and with a culture already intact. The location of the ancient habitat of Nigerian Homo Erectus was Okigwe in Igbo land and coincides with Igbo oral traditions of the Age of Innocence when man lived in close proximity with the God/Goddess and enjoyed nature‘s bounty. the world has deprived itself of the most ancient wisdom of its ancestors. Igbo claims to being autochthonous and sprung from the earth (which means ‗evolved. hunger and global poverty from which no country has been spared. native philosophies of an entire continent. Linguists as well as Oral Traditions of diverse peoples and written records of the ancients from various continents. Nsukka. 1 The returning impact of the Machiavellian ideologies that were invoked to justify the systematic exploitation of our ancestral lands continues to take its toll upon our world in the form of mounting economic crises. Through 18 long years of painstaking field work and library reCatherine Acholonu-Olumba happily dissearch. The fact that Nigerian Homo Erectus was a direct descendant of Australopeticus belonging to the time range of 7 million B. environmental and natural disasters. No. mounting human suffering. the world is tethering to the brink because of the falsehoods that have replaced age-long wisdoms that created golden Ages in places like India. things have fallen apart even in God‘s house. the Himalayas and of course. C. including Native American languages. Hebrew. 2009 at the Schomburg ontologists. equally find their counterpart in Igbo oral traditional records. Indeed. We demonstrate that by silencing the voices of scholars. that Homo Sapiens or Modern Man (Adam) was a product of a genetic manipulation of the evolutionary process. and the process that turned him into a Fallen (which means degenerate) human. Geneticists.Professor plays her Award on July 18. They Lived Before Adam speaks to this situation. are located in South-Eastern Nigeria and were dated 1. Egypt.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 4 Volume 4. shatters the Out of East Africa hypothesis. our international research team came to the conclusion that: Homo Erectus or Early Man who left Africa to populate the world was not primitive at all.6 million B. the center holds nowhere.C. Eden which being the original home of mankind. ers. That the ‗Out of Africa‘ phenomenon was an ‗Out of Nigeria‘ phenomenon because the oldest stone implements of Homo Erectus so far found anywhere in the world. peeling off layers upon layers of the Great Lie of the Ages that has birthed modern civilization. not created‘). Pale. whose remains were discovered in 2001 in the Nigeria-Chad border by a team of French paleontologists. Demonstrable evidence abounds in literally every language spoken today all over the world. (preceding Lucy and her peers by 4 million to 2 million years). Eskimo tribal languages. scientists. was without doubt. pulling together works by Anthropologists. bringing with them what we have come to know as culture. an African location. It shines the torch upon the earliest ancestors of our common humanity – the first World Travelers who left Africa to populate the globe. by a team of British and Nigerian archaeologists of the University of Nigeria. Archaeologists. re-introducing the age-old maxims that guided our earliest ancestors to live in harmony with nature and other species. Ancient Sumerian cuneiform records of the true story of the creation of Adam (Homo Sapiens) from an already existing human stock of Homo Erectus roaming the wilds of Sub-Saharan Africa. including stone writings and ancient symbols left behind by ‗primitive‘ Africans of yesteryears. Akkadian and an- . all go to prove Darwin‘s Law of Evolution. Chinese. and their remembrance of a time when there were no metal implements and man used stone sharpened for them by the god-men. English.

These are just the tips of the iceberg. but also and more importantly it birthed Christianity. coupled with the presence of Homo Erectus in the same area. Indeed. No.‘ We are here to announce to you. that the world‘s first global Lingua Franca was Igbo language. Mother Africa will now speak to her children Olumba through the Igbo voice of the ancestors of Adam. we invite you to read They Lived Before Adam and see how we consistently exhumed buried information of the contributions of ancient Black Africans to world civilizations like a detective enterprise. Igbo culture did not only birth Hebrew culture and language. for all the fundamentals. confirms Nigeria as the location of Biblical Eden. Ladies and gentlemen. once their incubation period is complete. idi nso).‖ as the Igbo still maintain ( ogu bu ike). evil and death into the world. the fish and the city four square are all derived from Igbo traditional symbol-representations of their cosmos which is built upon four quadrants. The inscriptions on these monoliths of Cross River State. but it was also they who guided and guarded humanity against excesses. Our finding is that not only was it the Igbo and their brethren scattered across the African continent. observance of personal Holiness (what the Igbo call iji ofo na ogu. Using only one/tenth of his brain. Undeniable elements of Igbo culture are still found in the frescoes and written traditions of Mycenae to this day. symbols and Sacraments of Christianity are rooted in Igbo cultural practice. ladies and gentlemen. what we are saying is that it is time for the ‗opening of the Professor Catherine Acholonumouth‘ of the Great Mother of humankind. instead of saying ―right is might. ‗Might is right‘ and ‗the end justifies the means. Death and Resurrection of the god-man or Christ (as in the initiation ceremony of the Eze Nri the Igbo Priest King of the World).The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 5 Volume 4. the Eucharist as the food of life and the body and blood of the deity (is a direct replication of Igbo kola-nut ritual/emume oji ). and he no longer saw things from a holistic perspective. that the world. At the center of this axis shift is Barack Obama‘s presidency of the most powerful country in the world. They Lived Before Adam is the communion kola nut for the putting together that which has fallen apart by default. language and symbol writing. as well as letters from a Dravidian Indian language known as Malayalam. For example. More than that. who gave the world its pristine culture. These include the confession of sin (which is called onuebo in Igbo). His right brain was separated from his left brain. the cross. Nigeria confirm oral traditions of the natives that the first mother of humanity (an entity known to modern man as Eve) lived in Southern Nigeria. The ancient stone inscriptions/monoliths of Southern Nigeria bear some of the oldest letters known to man which include letters found in Original Sumerian and samples of some of the earliest Egyptian hieroglyphics. They Lived Before Adam could. 1 cient Sumerian as well as Canaanite – the mother of Akkadian. especially the guiding principles and wisdoms of his Igbo/African ancestors. be called a significant step in that longed-for process of unification of the split soul-center of Adam. In that state he turned everything upside down and inside out. Sumerian and Hebrew. befouling the natural environment he was meant to shepherd. The fact that our common human destiny has forced a political axis-shift upon the world is all too clear even to the blind. which the Hebrew Cabbalah calls Tikkun and the Igbo call Itiko onu. Adam‘s children say. therefore. and that the birth of her first son brought disease. religion. The wisdom that threw up a Barack Obama and forced him onto world-political center-stage is the same force that ensures that buried civilizations like buried seeds and ideas ultimately sprout. he became spiritually blind and a predator to the environment and to the rest of the species. This. and was transformed into a being who was no more centered and whole. . which was Greece‘s greatest gift to Europe. Known throughout history as the Sea Peoples. Even the names of God in the Hebrew Cabbalah and the Chinese I-Ching are mostly derived from Igbo native theology. it was an Igbo speaking tribe who sacked monarchy in Greece and installed the first Democracy. things fell apart first in God‘s house when Adam was taken away from the heaven state of mind and being. now tethering at the brink of collapse of this dominant Western civilization needs to return to the wisdoms of its African ancestors.

a true dialogue between Africa and the rest of the world . for in them abides healing. Director of Harlem Book Fair and Professor Marie Umeh and all the organizers of The Flora Nwapa Literary Award for considering us worthy to get this award. 1 Therefore. and as Achebe reminds us. You might ask.her children . perhaps for the first time since the colonization of Africa. whose banishment by the Christian missionaries made mankind motherless and bereft of wisdom. Thank you. for her support to They Lived Before Adam. No.in an atmosphere of mutual respect. Max Rodriquez. the international Mother of Igbo Studies and a unique inspiration to Igbo Studies worldwide. Director of the Schomburg Center. my co-authors and myself. Let it be that the Flora Nwapa Award has (re-)instituted the return of Mother Africa and of the Eternal Goddess of the Homo Erectus Igbos once more into human affairs. in Things Fall Apart. when next you read Things Fall Apart. when your detractors have taken from you the belief in yourselves.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 6 Volume 4. We are grateful to Professor Sabine Jell-Bahlsen. the missionaries empowered the outcasts to pull down the sovereign institutions in Africa. wholeness. The significance of today‘s event is to initiate. why is she suffering from poverty and corruption? The answer is that dysfunction was programmed into their systems by the colonial masters through the politics of divide and rule. We. are grateful to Chief Dr. For instance. they need do no more because then you have been made to become your own and your country‘s worst enemy. Howard Dodson. Professor Catherine Acholonu-Olumba (Country Ambassador UNCCD Forum of Arts and Culture and Former Special Advisor to the Nigerian President). growth and the true hope of the human race. . Mr. ―The Flow‖ Professor Acholonu-Olumba with her colleagues at the 2009 HBF. ―If Africa is home to such great wisdoms. pay particular attention to the great wisdoms of the Ozo and Ndi ichie god-men which the British colonialists demeaned. but more especially for giving this honor to Professor Flora Nwapa—great matriarch who was a powerful inspiration to many of us women writers.

but as head of a research team set up in 2004 under the auspices of the United Nations Forum of Arts and Culture. represented by the Minister of Culture and Tourism. Eddy Olumba. whom we the citizens of Imo State fondly call ―Ochinanwata‖ (The Boy King).). when it was published. Purchase. Ambassador Frank Ogbuewu. This research team has in it personalities. New York.000 Years of Africa‘s Lost Civilizations. who is also the Art and Culture Consultant of the United Nations Forum of Arts and Culture. Ajay Prabhakar . I am here on the invitation of Harlem Book Fair. Marymount College. a former Fulbright Scholar at the Westchester Consortium for International Studies and Visiting Professor at Manhattanville College. Stone Books and Cave Libraries. New York. 2009. such as Dr. First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.an Indian Software Technology Engineer and Specialist of the United Nations Forum of Arts and Culture.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 7 Volume 4. They Lived Before Adam. Chioma Ohakim. The United Nations Forum of Arts and Culture is a program of the global Secretariat of the UNCCD of which I happen to be the Nigerian representative and goodwill ambassador. Iona College and College of New Rochelle. all in New York State. SCHOMBURG CENTER FOR RESEARCH IN BLACK CULTURE. to the Fulbright organization and to the Westchester Consortium for International Studies for the support I received between 1989. for their unalloyed support for this project and for creating an atmosphere in Imo State. was presented to the world on 25th of September 2005 by the then President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Together. THE NEVER-BEEN-RULED [THE IGBO SINCE 1. The Gram Code of African Adam.] A C-SPAN TELEVISION LIVE BROADCAST LECTURE by PROFESSOR CATHERINE ACHOLONU-OLUMBA THE HARLEM BOOK FAIR. am a Professor of Linguistics and African Cultural Studies. 18TH JULY. 1 THEY LIVED BEFORE ADAM: PRE-HISTORIC ORIGINS OF THE IGBO. NEW YORK. Therefore.C. To underscore its importance. for the support and encouragement she continues to give to projects such as our own in today‘s Nigeria. Nneka Egbuna – a senior Culture Officer at UNESCO Nigeria. let me first of all acknowledge the following: Her Excellency Hajia Turai Umaru Musa Yar‘Adua. Prehistoric Origins of the Igbo – The Never-Been-Ruled (alternative title: The Igbo Since 1. when I discovered and published the Igbo and African roots of American slave author Olaudah Equiano (or Gustavus Vassa) and 1991 when these institutions I have mentioned granted me the honour of enjoying their hospitality and support as USA International Visitor and Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence. The new leadership of Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo. Reconstructing 450.6 Million B. I stand here today not as myself alone. Ms. 19 years ago here in the state of New York and precisely on the campus of Manhattanville College. these two books make up a total of about one thousand and one hundred pages. my home state. Barrister. They Lived Before Adam is a sequel to another work titled The Gram Code of African Adam. Their Excellencies Chief Ikedi Ohakim Governor of Imo State. Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. USA. No. They Lived Before Adam is my 16th published book and the second in a series which are the result of this research project that originally began in 1990. we express our gratitude to the US State Department. the apex Igbo organization. Purchase. published in 2005. Before I begin my talk. They Lived Before Adam.C. an Applied Arts Specialist and a distinguished Alumnus of the Manhattanville College. for powering the World Presentation of my book. and putting their stamp of approval on our new publication. Nigeria. the largest Black Book Fair in the World. Hon. I. on behalf of my family and myself. Nigeria. where intellectuals like me can function unperturbed and where academics and new ideas can thrive.6 MILLION B. and his amiable wife. book. to present our new . myself.

such as the letters representing the sounds r and n on the stones of Ikom. which many linguists have been struggling with for decades. written in a combination of Proto-Sumerian. which is the first and the highest Sephirah in the Hebrew Cabbalah. and that they were invented by the first mother of mankind. the concentric circle and every other known geometric shape. the letters in question are those representing the sounds ki and shi – the first and last letters of the Old Sumerian orthography. V. Our comparative linguistic analysis of words from many languages across the globe show that Igbo. religions. and sciences. the Infinite. was in fact spoken by the earliest inhabitants of countries as far-flung as Nigeria. Her eyes and mouth form the Canaanite/Hebrew letter Ayin. working with some British archaeologists. the spiral. that her first child was a boy through whom sin and death came into the world. Nigeria is that they include two letters that were the foundation of Proto-Cuneiform. so too were about ninety percent of the words used by Adam and his immediate family. Greece. The monolith dedicated to her bear her Ikom name Shishe. the language group that includes Okigwe. as the Hebrew Bible indicated. the triangle. David et. South-Eastern Nigeria. stone knives. What we found in the case of the inscribed monoliths of Cross River State. N. ineffable God. ProtoCanaanite and Dravidian Malayalam. C.C.6 million B. was that the Okigwe Early Stone Age habitat of Homo Erectus (Early Man) was the one stop shop or factory/ware house that supplied survival tools to pockets of Homo Erectus habitations worldwide. Oral traditions of the natives say that the inscriptions were executed by the Stone Age people.. North and South America. Their conclusion. Bosnia. Nigeria. as well as polished stone implements: hand axes. the crescent. For us. and even here in West Virginia. Faculty members of the Archaeology Department. al. E. but we were the first to see their inscriptions as a form of writing and to actually isolate and transcribe some of its letters.000 B. Also we found some basic letters of early Egyptian hieroglyphics. Egypt. Nsukka. Nsukka. excavated several lorry loads of non-polished. The antiquity of the stones and the fact they were found in virgin forests of rural Ikom where many were buried underground. of Early Stone Age hand axes and other stone implements belonging to the time zone of 1. Ikom villagers call this first mother Shishe and insist that she was the first woman to ever bear a child by pregnancy. especially names of people and places. These include the cross. A. In fact. Her Ikom name Shishe is the same name which Adam called Eve in Hebrew language at the moment of creation in the Biblical Genesis story. The archaeologists. . according to Plato‘s record in his book Timaeus and Critias. the circle. including even the Greenland Eskimos.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 8 Volume 4. and as some say. picks.C. But the majority of the letters on the monoliths of Ikom belong to a Dravidian language called Malayalam. the Nigeria Habitat of Homo Erectus. 1 Two things mark our work as a new. Our comparative linguistic analysis of words from a number of languages spoken in all the five continents of the globe confirm what linguists have long suspected that mankind. F. Chikwendu and Dr. Dr. N. Turkey. The first is our discovery and transcription of lost stone writings of Pre-Historic Africans. such as Dr. Mesopotamia. the two vernacular words from that survived the sinking of Atlantis. spoke one language at the beginning. as well as symbols now recognized as universal due to the fact that they now form the basic symbols of most cultures. Umeji and others. Dr. No. University of Nigeria. published in a number of local journals at the time. Scotland. These inscribed stones located in the SouthEastern region of Nigeria in a very rural place called Ikom in Cross River State which have been attracting international researchers since they were first found by colonial anthropologists over four decades ago. Another series of stone inscriptions called Ogam found in Ireland. this means that it was from Okigwe in Pre-historic Nigeria that the ‗Out of Africa‘ migrations of Early Man kicked off to populate the five continents of the globe. USA. were found to have derived in sound and in meaning from the Igbo language environment. United Kingdom. ‗groundbreaking‘ addition to scholarship. There are over 300 of these inscribed stones at Ikom. Another thing that marked a turning point in our research was the discovery by a team of archaeologists of the University of Nigeria. shows that they were indigenous and that they belong to the twilight days of human Pre-history. China. the first humans. were also transcribed by our team into an African language still spoken today in Nigeria. Anozie. It represents the No-Thing. cleavers in a place called Ugwuele in Okigwe in Igbo land. a writing system used in Mesopotamia (Sumer) before 4.

the never-been-ruled. predating Lucy and her new-found Haki Madhabuti. As such. whereas it had been previously believed that Adam and Eve were descended from an East African Homo Habilis named Lucy. our findings reveal that the creation of Adam was not an upward climb on the evolutionary ladder but as the Bible says. However. Adam lost all that when his right brain was shut down by John Jay College students at the 2009 Harlem Book Fair. These are the same symbols used in every religion and sacred literature all over the world.two problems metaphorically demonstrated in Chinua Achebe‘s Things Fall Apart .. Igbo oral tradition confirms the claims by Geneticists that by 280. and that the solutions to the problems created for humankind by Modernity and the Falling Apart of Adam .are to be sought in Black Africa. 1 Our research extended into the origins and meanings of the earliest symbols used by ancient Africans. we found evidence Helena D. 17th 2009. no longer whole or wholesome. In doing this. but more like a West African/Nigerian Chioma (the name of the First Lady of my State. of immense importance in revealing lost knowledge. No. Professor Catherine Acholonu-Olumba New York. oral and written traditions maintain that Homo Erectus were ‗heaven beings‘ or god-men who possessed mystical powers.000 B. Lewis. The significance of our research is that our findings are expanding the parameters of knowledge and demonstrating that both Evolutionism and Creationism played parts in the development of the human specie. The direct descendants of Homo Erectus were the small dwarfs who were the heroes of folktales in every part of the world. levitation. and they continued to live in Igbo land until they were driven out by the British colonialists.C. However. we found the Hebrew Bible. that we are children of Evolution – the uncreated (begotten. and the recently unearthed Egyptian Christian Bible The Nag Hammadi Scripture. for thereby he became divided. those who ‗created/engineered‘ him. that Eve and Adam were Black Africans (and that the earliest language of man was Igbo). in fact a West African/Nigerian location. Africa and the Americas and it was they who founded and sustained Igbo civilization. the ancestor of Homo Sapiens (Adam and Eve) lived at the Nigeria Chad Basin by 7 million B. not made). and bi-location and that their words could move mountains and change the course of rivers. . that indeed mankind is one family and that Black Africans were the earliest ancestors of humankind and the first to be called Homo. a Fall. the Hindu Vedas and Ramayana. human evolution was interrupted. confirming the claims by Geneticists who have been conducting mitochondrial DNA Host of The Phillis Wheatley Awards analysis in four leading universities here in USA. our findings reveal that it was not an East African Lucy. who is actually from Okigwe – the home of Homo Erectus) who could have been the Homo Habilis ancestor of Eve and Adam. We say this because research conducted by French Paleontologists led by Professor Michael Brunet revealed that Australopeticus. and Adam. Host of The ancestors by a whooping 2-4 million years! This again confirms what Igbo Oral Traditions Phillis Wheatley Awards tell us: that we did not come from anywhere. the direct ancestor of Homo Erectus. a hybrid was created through a process of genetic engineering. It was they who transported Igbo language and culture to all corners of the globe. Asia. a descent. All over Africa and in ancient Egyptian records. Wherever we looked and no matter how far back in time. C. the kings and queens of the earth and its peoples. the Cabbalahs of the Hebrew and the Chinese. July. that the lost Paradise of Eden was an African location. It was they who created the first civilizations in Europe. such as telepathy. that all mankind came from SubSaharan Africa. that we are autochthons.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 9 Volume 4.

Professor Chudi Uwazurike (third from right) with his colleagues at the 2009 Harlem Book Fair in NY on July 18.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 10 Volume 4. Marie Umeh with Haki Madhabuti at the 2009 Harlem Book Fair Max Rodriguez receiving an award at The River Room in in NY. Invocation entertains the audience at the 2009 Wheatley Awards. 1 Dr. NY. No. .

Marie Linton Umeh . April 2009. Ramonat Akinlolu.. Chizoba Umeh-Asuzu at Nigeria House in New York. who is an honor roll student in the prestigious Brooklyn Tech High School and a daughter of Nigerian-American immigrants. Marie Umeh at Nigeria House in New York. Guillermo Linares. such as New York City. Guillermo Linares. Olutosin Mustapha.‖ Dr. We pay tribute to Ramonat Akinolu for all her academic and community achievements and as a role model to other teenagers. known as the capital of the world. No. Dr. Isseu Diuof. Ms.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 11 Volume 4. April 2009. Joyce Adewunmi. 1 Dr. Ms. NYC Immigrant Heritage Week is an annual program initiated by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2004 to honor the contributions of recent immigrants‘ development of New York City. a 501 (c)(3) organization committed to improving educational and cultural services. a Senegalese born photo journalist and the publisher of Afrikanspot. April 2009. CUNY for her ―above the call of duty. presents Dr. Guillermo Linares and Dr. Marie Umeh with an award at Nigeria House in New York.‖ advocacy in assisting immigrants in their academic and professional pursuits in the U. Commissioner for Immigrant Affairs. Dr. Chief Ayoola Soetan. Uchenna Umeh. . who is also an educator and publisher of Afro Heritage Venture Magazine insists that ―New York City Immigrant Heritage Week is a program designed to encourage immigrants to integrate into American society and also to take pride in their heritage in a diverse metropolis. was selected as one of the event planners to organize the annual New York City Immigrant Heritage Week in April 2009 by the Mayor‘s Office of Immigrant Affairs. Afro Heritage Venture/NYC Immigrant Heritage Week Celebration! by Olutosin Mustapha Afro Heritage Venture. The Founder/Executive Director of Afro Heritage Venture. Ms. Some of the honorees are Dr. Publisher Tosin Mustapha and Dr. Ms.S. the Founder and Executive Director of New York African Chorus Ensemble in Harlem. Afro Heritage Venture honors Americans and Immigrants who are accomplishing extraordinary goals in the community to support other immigrants. Honorees at the Afro Heritage Venture Awards.A. April 2009. who is an Associate Professor of Africana Literature in the Department of English at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

as they share similarities in the words used for Adam and Eve in meaning. while lecturing as a visiting professor at several prestigious colleges in the same country. Of the many organizations she has collaborated Prof. and give a brief biography of her life. as certain meanings of words share a similarity to the Adam and Eve story. as there is a correlation between Ndi Ichie Akwa mythology or folklore tradition of Ndigbo by I. Kristen Gurka and Ryan Olsen Professor Catherine Acholonu-Olumba is a writer and researcher of African Cultural and Gender Studies. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba is an internationally known scholar. saying that the Adam and Eve story has links to the Igbo heritage via their language. and A Reply to Al Gore. CUNY by Daria Koszyk. one of the most notable is the United States Information Service. No. Motherism – The Afrocentric Alternative to Feminism. which took place in the Dominican Republic. she was one of only two Africans to participate in the United Nations Expert Group Meeting on Women. John Jay College. Some of the books she has written include The Gram Code of African Adam: Stone Books and Cave Libraries. The data goes as far as the Ten Commandments. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba speaks to John Jay College. she has been noticed by several internationally known leaders. discussing the findings of her research. C. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba's book titled. Nwosu. Also. and she has received numerous accolades gained from the books she has published on this topic. CUNY students in July. She always states this is the language in which Adam and Eve spoke. such as Professor of African History and Philosophy from Pilgrim‘s University and Theological Seminary in North Carolina. Acholonu-Olumba began to lecture at numerous universities in the United States and the United Kingdom. which was Igbo.S. she was able to ascertain that the original people on Earth all spoke the same language. with. 2009. 1 Igbo: The Beginning of All that was Lost An Interview With Catherine Acholonu-Olumba October 29. Reconstructing 450. They Lived Before Adam. Throughout her studies of the Ugwuele site. The book states that God gave ten laws to the people etched in stone. One of her most notable international accolades has been her inclusion within the book ―International Authors and Writers Who's Who. which symbolize the human ten fingers. In 1989 as an upcoming scholar. This document will cover the many achievements of Catherine Acholonu-Olumba. as well as the discovery of the Nigerian origin of a slave author from the seventeenth century. . In 1986. she found carved stones.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 12 Volume 4. The language relationship was done through the Hebrew and Igbo language. such as Former U.000 Years of Africa‘s Lost Civilizations. 2009. President Bill Clinton who wrote a letter to one of her organizations. and that all descendants are Igbo ambassadors. N. In 1990 she was awarded the Fulbright Scholar-Writer-in-Residency award by the United States.‖ During her travels. This meeting focused on the mainstreaming of gender into the Plans of Action of United Nations world conferences. which were used to commemorate people of prominence within that culture. is her claim through research that Homo Erectus was originated from the Igbo people. She has received prestigious awards. and even the laws share a similarity with the Hebrew ones.

They Lived Before Adam. Daria: Is it big? Acholonu-Olumba: It‘s not big. specifically the descendants of Ham. and her literary work further delves deeper into the origins of the African people. So. Africa‘s situation is different than here. That‘s what we have in our capital. 1 Acholonu-Olumba‘s book also states that the Igbo language and tradition share similarities with Noah and the distribution of his sons throughout the world. Daria: Did you go there? Acholonu-Olumba: I live there. In this interview. which afterward state that the great ancestors of the Igbo people were told by God to return to the center of the Earth to multiply in peace and tranquility. Daria: What is the thesis of your book. but not in Igbo villages and towns. we learned what the author felt and as we listened to her ideas and findings of the Igbo people. She is a highly knowledgeable and credible researcher. by Catherine Acholonu-Olumba. It‘s about rewriting history. The monoliths found are claimed to be landmarks for the new locations of Noah's children. It further adds to her accolades. and to find the similarities it had with prominent cultures throughout history to prove its validity. They Lived Before Adam. Professor Acholonu-Olumba and her book. The interview helped us get a more indepth idea about the Igbo society. we have decided to do an interview with the author herself. It was a great experience because it gave us a better understanding of the book and how ideas and languages of one society traveled to other areas. it‘s like the size of New Jersey. Upon researching information about the book. In terms of writing a paper. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba. Kristen: What has inspired you to write this book? Acholonu: I wanted to fill the missing gap in history. It‘s my ethnic group. Acholonu-Olumba is an intelligent person and it was a great experience having an interview with her. being South Eastern Nigeria. we can acknowledge many aspects of the hidden society from the author herself. We have rural villages and we have forests and cities but small cities not big with tall buildings. how the language and culture traveled and where and how it still exists today. Daria: Is it similar to New York City with buildings and everything? Acholonu-Olumba: Umm. which contains the cartographic center of the Earth. So this research is to try and see how we can restore what has been lost in terms of people and missing information. No. Her purpose for this book was to trace the genealogy of the African people as far as it can go. in a nutshell that is what the thesis is about. no. are both highly integrated with African history. Kristen: What was the most interesting fact you found during your research? .The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 13 Volume 4. It is located in the Southeastern part of Nigeria. There are over 100 tribes in Nigeria and Igbo is one of the three major tribes. This book was written because some people feel that the role that Africa has played has been denied. Maybe it‘s the size of New York City or a little less. very close to the Atlantic. Also. Daria: What does the name ―Igbo‖ mean? Acholonu-Olumba: Igbo is the name of a tribe in Nigeria. we have discovered many unknown ideas about the lost history of the Igbo society. They Lived Before Adam? Acholonu-Olumba: This book is about history. The story of Noah's flood is contained within their oral stories. This is compared to the biblical version where Noah tells his son Ham to return to Africa. as the book exemplifies the vast research she performed and gathered on this intricate topic of Igbo heritage. To know that anything that has been misrepresented about Africa can be restored.

Adam is homo sapien and he was the first person to leave the African continent and to begin to go around the world. The oldest people we can call Homo Erectus. from the pre Homo Erectus period. So. with that we can state our facts today until someone else finds something different as evidence of the oldest people. thousand of years later their color turned black. You can find evidence of . do you believe that the Igbo language is the basic language of human kind? Acholonu-Olumba: Yes. People who make choices in the food they eat and stuff like that and hunt. Kristen: Who is Obatala? Acholonu-Olumba: He was the leader of the migrant people. Can you explain that in more detail? Acholonu-Olumba: Yes. In some writings we found actually in India the image of their gods is blue not black or white or yellow or anything. such as Asia. We found these tools belonging to the time span of 1 million B. which make some kind of sense in the long run. The Igbo people were the original people. Europe. That‘s like before 1 million B. these people were there before homo sapiens which came on board around 200 thousand B. So. genetic connection and religious connection. C. He was different from animals that didn‘t use tools to cut their meat.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 14 Volume 4. When they left years ago. he would cut his food and he used stone and an axe to cut the meat and that was what Homo Erectus was known for. that‘s a whole different story from what I can say. No. Igbo land and that says that originally. Archeological evidence be cause archaeologists found that people who lived in Igbo land by 1 million B. C. but originally they were blue-black. which shows that Igbo language was the first language spoken in many continents around the globe by different people. C. So. we believe that the Igbo story goes all the way to Homo Erectus 1 million B. So . that is first man. So. He was the migrant African. C.those stones and tools distinguish the first man from the animals who didn‘t use tools. He was man. So. C. that kind of ties in with why the Indians describe their gods as blue. we‘re trying to find a connection. So research says that some writers believed that the first people who were on the African continent were blue in color. It‘s the basic language of Homo Erectus and the basic language of human kind. Kristen: So. That shows also that Homo Erectus who left Africa went with that language and he went everywhere with it. North and South America and of course Africa. Daria: I read in the book that the first people were a blueish color not black. Everywhere else we have 500 thousand B. C. So. So. The aspect of hunting is what man does and all that Homo Erectus was known for. The oldest people spoke that language So. blue-black. So. Kristen: What evidence did you use to prove that Igbo people were the oldest people on the planet? Acholonu-Olumba: Archeological evidence and linguistic evidence were used. a cultural connection. 1 Acholonu-Olumba: The most interesting information to me is the fact that we found Igbo language in different parts of the world as the foundation of the original language of most people in all the continents. that‘s the only way it traveled around the world. that‘s how this language is the first language and now these words are still here. The second proof is the linguistic evidence. Middle East. say that they are the oldest group than any one has ever found anybody from Homo Erectus habitation anywhere in the world. that‘s one proof. C. and beyond 1 million B. The Indian god was blue. C. the original Igbos lived around that period and so far that‘s the oldest time span of Homo Erectus anywhere in the world. but blue. Then after going around he came back and then he was led by a man named Obatala. In Nigeria he was called Obatala but in The Bible he was called Ham. It‘s the only place from 1 million B. So. They are people who can stand up and eat and do stuff like man and not like animals.

There is also another Atlantis symbol. I'm looking for evidence from prehistoric Africans. if I go to other continents and I found evidence of stories of people of Africa or their culture or language. The second link is the symbol of three circles joined together in a form of a triangle. they were there. The inscriptions are in Igbo language. After the ark . The shape is perfect and there is no way a stone could make a perfect shape like that unless the stone was soft while you were doing it. There is no other way. We cannot influence the language. India kept written history. So. instead of making a regular eye. but in Africa we don‘t have any records. So.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 15 Volume 4. Noah was the man of the ark. the people who speak this language. When one language influences another language. which was the root of basic religion. The symbol can be found in the Nok civilization. We have no written history but we do have some history. Some kind of basic technology was used to write it. They had a mystical culture. but we cannot make the language. The triangle with the Seeing Eye in the center. The places where you find the monoliths of the people are not speaking the Igbo language. Daria: Who was Ham and Kush? Acholonu-Olumba: Ham was the second son of Noah. They had the basic culture. There is no other explanation considering how far Igbo land is from other parts of the world right now and the fact that there is no evidence in known history that Igbo has been outside Igbo land can be beyond history. my research began about Africa trying to find out about Africa and the history of black people because that is the part of history that has been lost. then the first human beings around the world came from Africa. going to one nation or three or four but when you find one language in almost every nation so far from the place we have studied the only way we can show that especially when it‘s the primitive people and there is no evidence that Igbo people have traveled even if they traveled to Britain today. but you see people always tells stories and people always speak the language of heir ancestors. This is where scientists have proved that Igbo are the first people who populated and came from Africa. You find the symbol among the culture trade of one of the Nigerian‘s tribes. If there was an out of Africa phenomenon which scientist announced there was. it‘s obvious that the people living there before were Igbo. he had three sons. All artifacts of Nok have the triangular eye. So. no country. So. So. People ask why they make the eye in a triangle. The only way to find the history of Africa is to go to those continents who have written records because there is no continent. In Igbo language the inscriptions are in the language of natives. People in Europe kept written history. we keep going back. That is for me some history. Chinese kept written history. the stronger one is inflected. no people that don‘t make history by contact with other people. It is evidence that Africa made some contribution to global civilization or global culture. You find the dwarfs all over the world today because they left from Africa and traveled around the world. 1 one language going to one continent. I was reading up on other continents because we have written records and in Africa we have no written records. if I can find those things I can find evidence that Africa had some history before people began to leave. the only way to prove or explain Igbo presence in the language of different parts of the world is by the people who were there. we can not make the language. People who study prehistoric cultures were doing cultural comparisons. Daria: In what way is Nigeria related to ancient Atlantis and how does this have a connection with Igbo? Acholonu-Olumba: Atlantis has symbols. People of Nok are highly civilized. They found that one of the major Atlantis symbols was the triangular eye. No. When you look at the picture of the inscriptions you can see that they weren‘t written by stone. We can take the language. On the dollar bill there is a symbol from Atlantis. The third link was written by Igbo people because of the name of the monolith. African pre history. So. There were two major symbols that were used by Atlantean people. there is a possible link between ancient Nigerian people and the Atlantis. The ancestors. They say that the monoliths were written by the first people who were dwarfs meaning people who used stones. with the Seeing Eye in the center. Kristen: Did you choose to do research about Nigeria or did you have a specific reason? Acholonu-Olumba: Well. a mechanized instrument had to be used. The only place we can find evidence that people of Africa left and went to other parts of the world is the Homo Erectus period.

6 million B. It is the world‘s only record of a city surrounded by concentric rings of sea and land.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 16 Volume 4. Retrieved December 3.Harvest of Awards for Enigmatic Scholar. Ambassador Catherine Acholonu-Olumba's purpose for this book was to trace the genealogy of the African people as far as it can go. (2009). E. (2010). In conclusion. The Gram Code of African Adam : stone books and cave libraries: AFA PUBLICATIONS. and to find the similarities it had with prominent cultures throughout history so as to prove its validity.C. 2009. is her claim through research that Homo Erectus originated from the Igbo people. It is now shaped more or less like a skull with plenty of landmass missing from it . creating a deep depression exactly where Nigeria and Cameroon are presently located. 2009. and that all descendants are Igbo. Catherine Acholonu-Olumba's book titled.org/index. Ham had a number of sons.carcafriculture. the African continent is no more heart shaped.htm Nzomiwu. No. 1 incident he told each of his sons to go a different way. C. wealth and productivity of its people. all which go to show the Atlantis was part of Africa‘s past. They Lived Before Adam : prehistoric origins of the Igbo –the never before been ruled (Ndi Igbo since 1. This would confirm that Hebrew culture is a child of Canaanite culture and that was claimed in The Gram Code of African Adam : Stone Books and Cave Libraries. Noah‘s first son inherited culture from the children of Ham. The other son‘s name was Mizraim and he found Egypt. from http://www. Acholonu-Olumba. Kush was the first son of Ham.com/stories/200909070599. Linguists officially recognize Canaanite as the mother of Hebrew and other Semetic languages. So. fertility of its land and the beauty of its city. Nigeria: A CARC PUBLICATION. Kristen: Is there anything else you would like us to know that we didn‘t ask? Acholonu-Olumba: We talked about many things today. Retrieved December 3. (2008). Kristen: Was the African continent originally heart shaped? Acholonu-Olumba: Today. Daria: What research project or book are you working on now? Acholonu-Olumba: I am writing the sequel to the book They Lived Before Adam. the inheritor of the African continent among the three sons of the Biblical father of nations. Plato‘s description of Atlantis is that it was the most glorious civilization yet achieved by mankind in terms of its government. He came with his children and populated Africa.). (2009. The architecture of the main city of Atlantis is spectacularly labyrinthine. Daria: What was Plato‘s view on Atlantis? Acholonu-Olumba: Plato‘s records show that there were ten brothers who ruled parts of Atlantis. They Lived Before Adam. Catherine Acholonu Research Foundation. let‘s leave some for the next time we meet. the children of Shem.html . C. Daria: Thank you Professor Acholonu-Olumba for a great interview. References Acholonu-Olumba. Ham was sent to Africa to populate the continent. from http://allafrica. architecture. The mountains of North Africa are also called Atlas Mountains. September 7) Acholonu . the highest of them was named Atlas.

So my background in the field of medicine has been of tremendous help in my work as a human rights activist. and. prepare you to be the kind of person you are today. I found in the Southern-Eastern States of Nigeria. some widows are ostracized and seen as outcasts. (Smiles) Doctor Eleanor (Smiles): The pleasure is all mine Kady! Kady: Doctor Eleanor. Kady: Can you give us a brief history of your involvement in WiDO (Widows Development Organization)? Doctor Eleanor: I am a professional Medical Doctor with interest in gender and human rights. I am very happy to say that I believe in God. No. one a man and the other a woman. Some people know her as the woman who played an unfailingly instrumental role in the passing of widow‘s right by the Enugu State House of Assembly (Nigeria). Kady: Hello Doctor Eleanor! First of all. which has been signed into Law in June 28th. I notice her charming smiles. In some cases in those Southern Nigeria States.‖ Yet. an encourager and a tower of strength in my life. Kady: How did your education. and my suspicions about the ill treatment of widows were confirmed. who is really my role model you know. Whereas. For example.S. In my adult years. I was more than honored to interview one of worlds‘ most influential women for the Flora Nwapa Club. As a Justice Studies Major. and at conferences on behalf of widows around the world. I must say that education did play a role. I can‘t wait to have my fellow classmates and colleagues read this interview. among countless others. what brings you in the U. I started my journey for the better treatment of widows and the respect of their human rights. Anambra. some are even seen as witches. 1 An Evening with a Renowned Activist by Kadiatu Sylla Dr. 2001. so dedicated and passionate about what you are doing? Doctor Eleanor: First. both in London and Nigeria. I am a woman of faith. neither is it my second visit in the U. an individual who is concerned about the world‘ socio-economic and political injustice. which have been crucial in my endeavors.S. let me say that it is a great pleasure to meet you. Nigeria. Ebonyi and Imo. many dehumanizing practices associated with being a widow. Doctor Eleanor Nwadinobi has been recognized for her internationally renowned stand for human rights. specifically that of widows from Africa. while listening to her. who has blessed me with good health. specifically in Southern Nigeria. other people know her as the woman who historically revealed the dehumanizing acts against widows around the world. In other countries around the world. As I look at her throughout the interview. England. Others know her as the lady who rightfully said in one of her papers at the UN ― Culture is a way of life passed down from generation to generation. this is not the first. You‘ve just made me one of the stars at John Jay. a McNair Scholar and an inspiring play writer and most of all. Most widows in those states and around the world for that matter are disinherited. Eleanor Nwadinobi United Na- tions NGO/DPI Executive Committee member Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Representative.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 17 Volume 4. the passion in her voice and the inspiration and wisdom one gets. can easily reintegrate in social life by remarrying and receiving the sympathy from the society at large. In the 1990‘s I was very uncomfortable when I noticed the way widows were treated when I visited two bereaved individuals. A medical doctor with interest in gender and human rights. even when I was going against the culture at that time. Enugu. I was deeply unnerved with the fact that the widow was treated differently from the widower. for what it is today. but when culture ceases to be a way of life and instead becomes a threat to human existence it is better defined as Torture. namely Abia. So I conducted a research in those Southern States of Nigeria in the 1990‘s. on the other hand. And I am really blessed to have my mother. the United-States and Brazil . would you tell me if this is your first time in the United States? If not. most women are blamed for the death of their husbands. N. My family supported me. So when my hus- . I am grateful for my faith. intellect and compassion. which took place in March 2010 . I have been here several times to present papers at the U. I also consider myself very blessed that I got married to a very supportive man with whom I have a wonderful family. because issues of widowhood and burial are taboo subjects in my country. has been shaped by a multiplicity of factors. during this cold season? Doctor Eleanor: No. But it must be understood that my life. widowers. Secondly. Thus.

given that my children have grown now! (since I am currently doing a masters in human rights in Ireland. my father despite being ―educated‖ did not feel that a girl child has a prime position as an heir. what was so unique about your parents that propelled them to see beyond that immediate gratification and say ―you know what. Sub-Saharan Africa regional Representative Dr. However. Though both of us coming from West Africa. you and I know that it‘s not like parents don‘t want their daughters to go to school. even politically compelled to keep their daughters home. from my father‘s point of view. If you noticed. we achieved it. and he has been one of my greatest champions and encouragers. What are your thoughts about her? Are you proud of her. then major problems arise. So in his case. we might need her right now. Ambassador of Goodwill to Africa. could not achieve. Then the wider community that you mentioned in Africa is a huge obstacle. So what is unique about your parents and what kind of advice do you have for African mothers.N. So she got that leverage.N. 1 band had a road accident. Mind you. Kady: Speaking of the community. in answer to your question. So. or going on her own to achieve her career goals. And if the community questions a husband‘s manhood by trying to figure what kind of a man he is by allowing his wife to travel internationally for conferences.com ing to the U. Mary Canrm Screen and to say. here and there. we have an African lady today as the President of Liberia. So I have got to say that I am proud of you Kady for the questions that you have asked at the U.N. UNREP . the man has to be strong. I said ―my mother‖ played a crucial role. the connections. So I think that education is highly important. ― Well it looks like her husband is okay with her travelNoema Chaplin. during which I nearly lost him. If I was going to conferences internationally. People ask me why I am still going to school. you know. instead of letting them go to school.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 18 Volume 4. Go out to these meetings. No. he then became interested in editing my conference papers. But it‘s connected to your previous question. They couldn‘t achieve a female President. I tell them that one never stops learning. it‘s really a question of striking that balance. it is crucial to have that family support. There is always that possibility where they may say. Most parents in West African countries seem economically and socially. America. not just for a woman going into activism you know. the reach and the networks. Kady: Thank you for giving us those insights about education. speak up and speak out! Kady: (With a smile) Thank you Doctor! It is actually very important that you said that. This is actually why I was emphasizing to you the importance of coming to these meetings at the U. because the community is very strong in Africa. having said that. but also for a woman aspiring to great heights. I think once you show that you‘re empowered or Committee. But my husband survived. because you said ―parents‖ several times. Something that the oldest and biggest democracy. parents and mothers in particular should do everything to ensure the education of their daughters because when you educate a girl. you educate an entire nation. But just as you have said. Queen Mother Dr. education is learning.N. Now on the flip side of that. Community Mayor of Harlem. In addition. if he succumbs to the community or peer pressure. you know make few suggestions. the support that I‘ve got from my husband has helped me achieve what I want to achieve. he would want to have a look. so who are we to complain?‖ But also. her husband or the home if her career entails a lot of traveling‖? So it‘s difficult to overcome Delegates with Queen Mother: United Nations NGO/DPI Executive those hurdles. That‘s the sort of thing that you need to do as often as possible. So in your case. Thus. because due to so many . I would not say that he supported me in going into activism or championing the cause in the beginning. then it would propel them Ann Nwadinobi. Photos: eEyeCam. but her future matters the most‖. Do you actually know Ellen Johnson‘s background? She actually was working with the U. people told me that it was because I was looking into taboo subjects. Eleanor get spousal support if you‘re married.) Well. meetings from the youth perspective. if not what do you think she should be doing? Doctor Eleanor: I am extremely proud that we have a female President on the continent of Africa. Delois Blakely. by the time I started gaining recognition and going to conferences internationally. ―Well who is going to look after her family. as far as the education of their daughters is concerned? Doctor Eleanor: Let us back track a little bit. He then became the proud father.

Eleanor Nwadinobi speaking to an audience at the 2010 United Nations Commission on the advantage that you can. Africa again has become so wide opened to the rest of the world. It speaks volumes. It‘s actually good that we expatiated on culture. Culture is good. . Kady: Last question. So what is your opinion about America having its first Black President today and an individual as exemplary as President Barack Obama? Doctor Eleanor: I am ecstatic over the fact that we have a Black President of the United States. We have young people. So I think that President Obama should be used as an example to show us cultures that do work and those that don‘t work. Nwadinobi was honored with the following awards: ―Ada e ji agamba‖ from Abia State. No. March 7. Male Involvement in Promoting Human Rights for Women. use it to the best Dr. Yet you can also use some of the Western culture to propel yourself to do something better. because if it were not the type of democracy that allowed voters to vote and votes to be fairly counted. There is the good and the bad culture. In December 2009. 1 other facts. You and I. So what advice do you have for those women. in fact are perfect examples of that. especially the young ones? How do these women create a balance between the Western cultures and what‘s going on in Africa? Doctor Eleanor: My advice is that if you have the opportunity. from Africa to Malaysia. because we have a President who grew up in all kinds of cultures. (the English translation is: ―The daughter who represents us abroad. His Presidency speaks volume for culture and for change. And when it comes to ―harmful culture‖ and the keyword is ―harmful ‖ then we must get rid of that as quickly as possible. Nigeria. 2010. aspirations and dreams that can come true. then he wouldn‘t be President. It speaks volumes for hope. to the United States and Hawaii.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 19 Volume 4. also changes. especially women all around the world getting their Master‘s and PhD‘s. Eleanor Nwadinobi is the recipient of several meritorious awards. Dr. Courtesy of Piyanuch Panichpisal Audience at the panel.‖) and ―Ambassador of Women in Need‖ from Umuada Igbo. but it Status of Women. Obama‘s presidency speaks volumes for democracy. Dr. There is the Western influence that can turn our African culture right around on its head. Nigeria. while ensuring that the richness of the African culture is maintained. as to how far the Black race has come in a country in which they have been slaves and discriminated against.

‖ As Steinem explained. Julia Wright (Richard Wright's daughter).‖ She urged her audience to understand the ways ―being marginalized becomes part of our core. and that is the conclusion. Steinem‘s goal was to continually emphasize ―how totally crazy sorting people by sex and race is. delivered this year‘s Addison Gayle Memorial Lecture at Baruch College. Women‘s Studies. And there is no such thing as being anti-racist without being a feminist. innovative. Ms. this skepticism about violence.‖ Steinem described herself as a ―hope-aholic. Caryl Philips. Steinem explained how tracing DNA trails shows that every single human being is related to an ancestor in Southern Africa.‘ s assassination. Both Gloria Steinem and Addison Gayle collaborated on an article immediately following the traumatic events that shook the nation in 1968 after Martin Luther King. which is. followed the civil rights movement. As the primary objects of violence by sex. To be pessimistic is to be defeated before we begin. I was in awe of him.‖ Steinem was clearly honored to speak at a lecture dedicated to Gloria Steinem. Lisa Williams Appearing both ageless and wise. Tuzyline Jita Allan. Jr.‖ someone ―really understanding. Over the course of her lecture.‖ This was Steinem‘s message—a message of hope and renewal that encouraged everyone in the audience-those who came of age during the second wave of feminism. ―We can‘t fight one without fighting the other. Professor Houston Baker. And yet. has organized the lectures since their inception.‖ They worked together many years ago in the 1960‘s. The movement for women‘s suffrage followed the abolitionist movement. including John A. someone who had a deep and quiet knowledge ―at the back of his eyes. part of patriarchy. Henry Louis Gates Jr. urging those present to make announcements about the various political activities going on in the Baruch community. Throughout her talk. of course. No. Manthia Diawara. Williams. at New York magazine. She began her talk by inviting the audience to take over the agenda. Referring to a documentary.‖ someone who does not give in to the defeat of pessimism. 1 Steinem at Baruch by Dr. John Edgar Wideman. following the untimely death of Addison Gayle. One of her most moving statements was clearly. gave the inaugural lecture that year and subsequently the lectures have featured a number of notable writers and critics. just as the second wave of feminism. Steinem first and foremost stressed the importance of understanding the intersections between race and gender oppression..The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 20 Volume 4. Barbara Christian (late). Her goal is always to undermine hierarchy. Professor of English at Baruch College. by race. ―We had a type of unconscious coalition of the outs—this sense of outsiderness.‖ Steinem told the audience. These DNA trails demonstrate that as humans migrated throughout the globe. Jr.‖ distributed by National Geographic. by both—we were pretty skeptical about whether violence can change anything in this country. Steinem said in this present day. Lisa Williams world. upstart publication. Steinem‘s point was that all of these systems of inequality must be fought. Gayle's close friend and intellectual collaborator. race was just a minor adjustment to climate. She described Gayle as a man who was never Founder. Magazine condescending. sex and race caste systems can and will be uprooted. and Carol Boyce Davies. Addison Gayle‘s memory. ―We had outsider empathy for each other.‖ By working together. The audience was packed with hundreds of young college students and older members of the New York community who had come out to see and hear from one of our most important early feminist leaders. Professor Tuzyline Jita Allan . CUNY Distinguished Professor and renowned African American literary critic. ―These caste systems are intertwined and …there is no such thing as trying to separate them. Jr. on April 16th. Arnold Rampersad. ―Progress lies in the direction we haven‘t been. The Addison Gayle Memorial Lecture Series began in 1991. ―Journey of Man. ―doesn‘t work.‖ she stated. ―There is no such thing as being a successful feminist activist without being an anti-racist and without standing up for movements of sexual liberation.‖ She even imagined a moment in the future when a lecturer would try to convince her audience that there ever existed a time when such racial sorting even existed. the 75 year-old Gloria Steinem.‖ Steinem said. when it was a young. as well as the movements for the liberation of sexuality.. and as Steinem emphasized. as well as the many young students striving today to build a more equal and humane Dr. Native American Studies if we are going to have a [full] human history. ―Still we have to have Black Studies.

gave her views through the key hole from the other side of the door by taking a peek specifically at the role of men in actualizing the ideals of women's empowerment and gender equality. flew in from Owerri. International Women's Day 2000. March 7. People who tasted her food for life (Green Life Formula 1) said: "The drink was deliciously nutritious. and a law maker. Dr. Harlem. where male dominance. Eleanor Nwadinobi. Queen Afua. Her examples of male involvement came from a training workshop she conducted in Enugu titled. Queen Afua. was similar to her health plan for the "sacred women" who knocked on her door searching for healing and happiness. as the President of the Security Council. "The African Woman From the Cradle to the Grave: How Can Male Involvement Improve Her Life?" x-rayed the crises of the girl child and woman within the context of culture in Africa and Nigeria in particular. Customary Practices and Law in Nigeria‖ for thirty faith and traditional leaders held in 2009 by the Widows Development Organization in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretary. patriarchal systems and the custody of cultural norms have continually been identified as the problem. giving scholarships to them and celebrating women for giving birth to girls. March 3 . N. CUNY. Queen Afua had the audience chant "I can heal myself!" over and over to empower everyone with the confidence that the best life---good health---is in our hands. Ambassador Chowdhury proposed the Proclamation of the UN International Decade for Culture of Peace and Nonviolence (2001-2010) and chaired the UN General Assembly drafting group for the preparation and adoption of the UN Program of Action for the Culture of Peace in 1999. Nwadinobi's presentation about girls and women in Nigeria and the challenges they face brought heartfelt sighs from the audience. and Dr. 2010 at the United Nations' Church Center in New York. along with Dr. According to Nwadinobi.. 3) to promote WI LL . peace and security on March 8. Ambassador Anwarul K." Queen Afua is a great Ambassador of Wellness promoting healthy living and discipline as the cure for violence in our communities. "Male Involvement in Human Rights of Women: Implications for the Beijing Platform of Action: 15 Years After. Her presentation. Dr. Dr. "Male Involvement in Promoting Human Rights for Women: Implications For Beijing + 15. ―Building Bridges: Faith. 2010. first. Nigeria to lead the forum." both before and during his tenure in office. No." He was the Ambassador of Bangladesh to the UN from 1996 to 2001. Chowdhury was chair of the afternoon's event and the panel. Two QUEENS graced the occasion at the United Nations' Commission on the Status of Women's 54th meeting (CSW-54): The Queen Mother of Harlem. Overcoming An Angry Vagina (2010). and the Queen of Holistic Health in Brooklyn. the Queen Mother of "wellness. the groups pledged the following: 1) to celebrate the girl-child by ensuring that girls are kept in school. Secondly. Dr. he initiated the proposal for the adoption of the Security Council Resolution 1325 on women. It was particularly marvelous when she mentioned that President Barack Obama's campaign for Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban ki moon." had a full house of conference attendees and friends of the presenters on Sunday. Imo State. The objective was to target the custodians of culture and religion in a system where all traditional rulers are men and most religious leaders especially in orthodox denominations are men. People in the audience were anxious to buy: The City of Wellness (2008). who won the coveted award for the BEST DOCTOR had a table set up with her comprehensive formulas for wellness as she distributed cards promoting her new book. Delois Blakely. 1 MALE INVOLVEMENT IN PROMOTING HUMAN RIGHTS FOR WOMEN by Marie Umeh The panel. Two of the highlights of his truly remarkable contribution to the world community have been. Dr. She talked about her earlier books to promote health and healing in the communities of the world. President of the Widows Development Organization in Enugu. Eleanor Nwadinobi at the U. after the three days of training. Delois Blakely. Marie Umeh of the Department of English at John Jay College. 2) to encourage the cause of women‘s inheritance to landed property from both the father and husband. Eleanor Nwadinobi.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 21 Volume 4. who is a medical doctor healing the wounds of women.

2010 in New York. 12) to organize outreach workshops to sensitize and to empower rural dwellers to overcome all cultural challenges." He statistically cited the fact that there are an overwhelming number of widows than widowers in all male dominated cultures of the world. together with their children. No. he advised men to allow women their space to contribute as much as they can to the upkeep of the family. calling them lord and master of the house. as a result of imbalanced and unfair treatment meted to most women in most societies and cultures of the world. March 7. 1 writing. According to him. 8) to preach adoption to childless couples. as much as possible. "The American women's movement for equality has not been won totally. He reminded everyone that the World Health Organization (WHO) had since 2005 declared such violent behavior as a public health problem/issue. 4) to encourage allocation of land to women. What unifies humanity is greater than Anwarul K. violence is always larger than violence against women. 5) to declare proclamations. Domestic abuse or guests at the United Nations CSW-54 meeting on March 7." identified the problem of gender discrimination as a manifestation of sexism in America. Dr. 2010. Inc.) Peter Igwilo. at St. 11) to lead by example. and what separates women and men. Such statements serve only as a ploy to cover up abuses against each other. Dr. Marie Umeh. Therefore. Most men die early leaving their wives and children to enjoy the family wealth or suffer untold hardship as the aftermath. the Director of Pastoral Care Services Department. This would enable both husbands and wives to live for each other. Chowdhury. The follow-up on the commitments of traditional rulers and religious leaders is planned by WIDO through community visits. "if the high number of physical and psychological violence against women in both the private and public sectors is . "(Re)Defining Masculinity: Male Involvement in Eradicating Violence Against Women and Promoting Human Rights for Women. the firebrand cleric and academic also gave an ecclesiastical recipe for reversing the trend which is threatening a happy family life in all the communities of the world. occasioned by male domination and characterized by all kinds of violence against women and children. Queen Afua of Heal Thyself. it is unfair for the United Nations or its agency to continue to pursue violence against women in isolation of violence against other members of the family. His statement that "male domination in history has not benefited men" drew great applause. Catherine's West Rehabilitation Hospital in Hialeah. Florida. it Courtesy of Piyanuch Panichpisal is always a wrong strategy to attempt to promote one sex or Rev.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 22 Volume 4. If the men don't get their disappearing acts together. Marie Umeh's presentation. especially since the Beijing conference. addressed the far reaching damages and devastation the family and marriage institutions have incurred overtime. He recognized equality of all human beings irrespective of sex or Eleanor Nwadinobi at the Millenium UN Plaza Hotel in New York on race. Men end up becoming beasts of burden and sacrificial lambs and die early deaths. Rev. 7) to employ effective dialogue on issues of customs. "Men are the losers. Dr. commended the age long struggles by women. Marie Umeh. by warning the audience that domestic violence should no longer be considered a family or private issue." he told an audience of about one hundred people gathered together in the Hardin Room at the UN's Church Center in New York. their depleting numbers and untimely deaths will continue to rise leaving their children and widows to enjoy or suffer. Peter Igwilo. that is. Ambassador gender over another. Calling for balance in the family roles and responsibilities." she told the global group gathered before her and the other panelists. he averred. and condemned all Courtesy of Piyanuch Panichpisal forms of mistreatment and violence against women under any guise. 6) to write bye-laws. Rev. The Queen Mother of Harlem Dr. 10) to educate the congregation on how the sex of a baby is determined. to write their own WILLS. Dr. (Dr. He further said that women alone should not hope to eliminate violence against women. "male domination is the greatest threat to male existence and one of the reasons "WHY MALES DIE FIRST. Beverly Frazier. Igwilo. Eleanor Nwadinobi. He questioned the audience about what accounts for men dying first in most marriage partnerships? He said that most cultures placed undue burdens and stress on men. Dr. Building upon the gains of the Beijing Platform of Action of 1995. Dr. Dr. Delois Blakey and Dr.

specifically their husbands or boyfriends. New York: Wholly Moses Productions. equal status." Quoting Jackson Katz author of Tough Guise (1999)." Dr." Reverend Dr. . questions were asked about specific programming for female ex-prisoners. Many questions followed. ―Equity means gradual equality. (Producer) & Jhally. DC/ New York: World Bank & Oxford University Press. Katz. which sought to determine the community institutional capacity (CIC) for prisoner reentry within Philadelphia. Ericsson. gender-bending workshops. who sponsored the Violence against Women Act of 1994 which outlawed all kinds of violence against women. She went on to point out that the culture to degrade and dehumanize women is a social ill that demands a social response: "If society's sex-role socialization schema is a learned behavior. she said that men perpetrate 90% of the violence in American society against women. (2000). A call to men: Ending violence against women. 1 anything to go by. heal thyself. medicine and medical supplies for women and children with HIV/AIDS globally. According to Dr. Michael Kimmel. to coordinate the service delivery system. As a Holistic practitioner. Within a larger study. Of the 2. Porter. especially in the United States? How do we get included in the process to make us whole again as Africans of the Middle Passage of the Trans-Atlantic Ocean of Enslavement?‖ Queen Afua responded to the question with: ―It‘s in my hands. every year hundreds of thousands of individuals are incarcerated and released. This is the objective of the United Nations. S.3 million incarcerated Americans. who built homes for battered women and their children in his district. Northampton.‖ References Ending violence against women: From words to action (2006). addressed the problem of the high rate of prison (re)entry among African-American males and females in the United States." According to Kimmel. Joseph Robinette ―Joe‖ Biden. then is to connect the tens of thousands of female ex-prisoners with the much-needed services available. Floyd Flake of the Greater Allen AME Zion Church in Jamaica. Muhammad Yunus. 12 percent are women---a four-fold increase in less than 8 years. which will enhance the preservation of their families and cohesion of communities. New York. For example. Study of the Secretary-General. "The answer to the problem of sexism is feminism. there is an enormous need for programs. social interventions. Frazier. S." and "The National Organization of Men against Sexism. and the enactment of legislation for female equality and equity. New York: United Nations. He is one of the founders of the groups: "Santa Cruz Men against Rape. (1999). MA: Media Education Foundation. Engendering development through gender equality in rights.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 23 Volume 4. resources. No. Police Science and Criminal Justice Administration at John Jay College. who provided food. I know you can empower yourself and then you can connect and heal others. and a 2006 Nobel Peace Prize recipient was also recognized as an activist who empower women by providing them with bank loans to start and to maintain businesses to take care of themselves and their families. and becoming a part of the solution by shedding the male disguise of tough guys before they adopted grassroots activism. Umeh gave examples of men who (re)defined masculinity by taking a critical look within. [Videodisk]. well-meaning men who have taken charge of making a positive difference in men and women's lives. Dr. Beverly Frazier. to develop new services. media and the crisis in masculinity. Saturate the body with chlorophyll. I‘ll give you what you are entitled to. founder of the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh. who teaches in the Department of Law. it can be unlearned through genderawareness education. Dr. an author and activist. Jr. (Director). in New York were also examples of honorable. CUNY. Thus. Dr. Umeh's profiles of exemplary men making change included: the Vice-President of the United States. J. who globally works to engage men in gender equality. a woman representing a group from North Carolina asked: ―What is the difference between equity and equality?‖ The panel chair said that equity is no longer used basically. beyond the borders of North America. (2002) Tough guise: Violence. was one of TIME (2005) magazine's outstanding humanitarians and philanthropists. was another one of the pillars in our society whose grassroots activism earned praise. and voice (2001). and to design programming to assist improving relationships with these women and the men whose negative influence may lead to recidivism. The balance we‘re looking for starts from within ourselves. also deserved recognition. They are more likely to be arrested because of their involvement with men. respectful. A CALL TO MEN. The results were striking. Northampton. Recent studies have also found that men are also one of the greatest obstacles to reentry for many of these women. Tough guise: violence. Green Life Formulas will build up the immune system. media and the crises in masculinity. T. We want equality between men and women. Tony Porter and Ted Bunch co-founders of the organization. Services to women were found to be uncoordinated and fragmented. William Henry ―Bill‖ Gates of Microsoft Corporation.‖ The Queen Mother of Harlem asked: ―Where do we go as the mothers of civilization for a heal ing process. & Bunch. T. MA: Media Education Foundation. Research has found that female pathways to offending is different than males. beds. services and support to improve the chances of the pro-social reintegration of women returning from prisons and jails. Washington. This is not what we want. more than ever in American history and more than in any country in the world. The challenge.

had two interracial marriages. 2004. No. plus a basketball and two records of African dance music. From Kenya. His father admitted that he had been smart in school and all of his children took after him for they were all quick with their lessons. 2004. corruption.A. p. self confidence. 2004. and a male figurine in tribal dress. Dreams from my father: a story of race and inheritance (1st pbk. Barack‘s pride in Africa was rescued for the students and facult y clapped. A review by Professor Marvie Brooks At a certain age and stage in life most people begin to search for their identity so that they may claim their personhood. an individual of mixed race parentage. who had liven in Kenya. who. after his graduation from college. away from my grandparents. Thus. Prior to his father‘s visit. corn. ate millet. for he had remarried. His father showed him how to dance and took him to a Dave Brubeck jazz concert. the real test came when Barack‘s homeroom teacher. IBN 987-1-4000-8277-3 457pp.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 24 Volume 4. asked questions and told him just how impressive his father was (Obama. and role in the community and the nation. (2004). her parents and his son. drive. the training of the young men who had to kill a lion to prove their manhood. lived in huts. p. no one around me seemed to know exactly what that meant (Obama. U. a lion.S. British accent. forced military service and his own student life turned upside down because of a dictator‘s whims. invited Barack senior to the school to lecture to his son‘s classmates about Kenya (Obama. New York: Three Rivers Press. pp. Barack felt let down because his reading revealed that the Luos were a part of the Nilotic people who were nomadic. During that month long stay over the ChristPresident Barack Obama. place in the family. the people‘s deep motivation and the country‘s drive for independence from Britain. The younger Barack‗s mixed race status made him deeply aware of his peculiar ―two-ness‖ or ―double consciousness. His parents separated when he was a toddler. he told the boy about his other brothers and sisters. 2004. the wonderful wildlife. stories from his grandparents and his mother about his father and their admiration for his learning. 69-70).‖2 Away from my mother. his father‘s tribe (Obama. However. Both men were students whom she met at the University of Hawaii. The elder Barack encouraged the young boy to study hard even during the Christmas holidays which brought about a minor crisis because his son wanted to watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas on television. Stanley Anne. plus his thoroughly engaging personality. Barack met his father when he was ten years old. B. tribal customs and laws. After this brief visit Barack and his father remained in contact with each other through mail correspondence. Having encountered purges. a lack of free speech. 5-9). he brought Barack some wooden sculptures. The first marriage was to his African father and the second to his stepfather who was from Indonesia. 69). wore thongs and originally came from an area around the Sudan. and meat. enthralled the students and teachers. pp. 45-46). 2004. an elephant. had given him information about Kenya‘s history from a work by Jomo Kenyatta. The father came to Hawaii to mend after a car accident in Kenya and to see the family —Barack‘s mother. 95. understand their culture. I was engaged in a fitful interior struggle. Lolo. He dreaded his father‘s forthcoming talk and anticipated the ridicule of his classmates. an anthropologist. Barack learned about power from his stepfather (Obama. pp. I was trying to raise myself to be a black man in America. respect for the elders who held legal meetings under the trees. This was true of the young Barack Obama. Barack did some research at the public library on Kenya and the Luo people. mas holidays. his mother. 2004. She and Barack traveled to Indonesia to live with his stepfather who introduced and treated Barack as his son (Obama. and beyond the given of my appearance. p. Barack junior had represented his father as a prince to the children at school so his library research was to fortify this vision complete with historical riches and venerable monuments like that of Egypt which he had seen in a picture painted by his grandfather (Obama. ed. and congratulated him on his good school marks. p.64). began seeking a meeting with the ―missing face‖—his absent Kenyan father. 2004. 63-64). 1 Obama. and determination to keep his principles and values gave him a portrait of the man (Obama. the elder Barack‘s learned talk about Kenya.). 2004. The reality of a father at home and the ―What is Africa to Me?‖ concept1 came home to roost during his father‘s visit. Father and son enjoyed reading their respective books together as they lounged around in his father‘s apartment sublet. 9. $14. However. 38). 76). . pp. His mother. his stepfather. p.

wife and possibly your life. 80). in Texas they witnessed ―Jim Crow‖ practices of discrimination and were victims when their daughter was hooted at by children chanting racial slurs at her and a black girl lying on the ground reading quietly from the same book. For example.M. During their life in Kansas. Barack junior whose Arabic name means ―blessed one‖ becomes just that as he arrives at an understanding of his father. 2004. honesty.. p.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 25 Volume 4. Hunt. 89-91). legal. his history and culture. pp. As a community activist in Chicago. The parents informed him that his parental duties included telling his daughter to avoid friendships with the coloreds (Obama. (1989). pp.B. 2004.E. black people were segregated out of the life of whites so they were just shadows to them.com/lib/johnjay/docDetail. She understood the value of an education and the practicality of United States citizenship so she ―homeschooled‖ her son. xvi.B. 2Du Bois. was straight about black-white interaction and attitudes when Barack told him that his grandmother wanted his grandpa to drive her to work because. Those who pushed too hard against this rule were labeled as militant and their opportunities were cut down (Obama.18-20).. Their oral and visual portraits of Barack Hussein Obama. 252-253).ebrary. e.g. When the telephone call came that his father had died. 2004. educational. The two children were rescued by Barack‘s grandmother. The issue raised is can one be an American with the same rights and responsibilities as the Caucasian society and be black? Does racism impede this integration and bring these two views into conflict? Must one always check to see how the white world views a black person? Du Bois explains why the African-American must view him/herself through two mirrors. p. Sr. 2004. Whites could never really know how racism affected black people. Of our spiritual strivings. 2004. and his grandfather‘s brother.action?docID=10085583 W. his father‘s wives. Du Bois introduced the important sociological and psychological term ―double consciousness‖ and ―two-ness‖ in The souls of Black folk. (Comp. when he left Hawaii to attend college. He described how a senior citizen where he lived was afraid to be on the elevator with a black male and would not apologize when it was explained to her that Barack lived in the building (Obama. 2004. through an American correspondence course in addition to having him attend Indonesian schools (Obama. (1997). pp. 801-804). His maternal grandparents adored Barack and deplored racism. Kansas but their experiences were different due to Jim Crow discrimination. p. No. Frank reminded Barack. Otherwise. 2004. The grandfather called their parents and made a visit to the school principal. The teenagers discussed the issue of power and always having to play by the white man‘s rules because of the power balance (Obama. a friend of his grandfather. pp. he could not imagine thinking in terms of ―white folks‖ or bigots when it came to his family (Obama. Barack‘s mother. 2004. Heritage. Frank must always be vigilant in order to survive. pp. each morning before she left for work. (3rd ed. other men will take advantage of you including taking your land. prejudice and segregation. pp. pp. the twenty-one year old Barack decided that he needed to visit Kenya and find out more about his father‘s history in order to complete his own self-actualization (Obama. p. 219-222). . In Hawaii. On that journey. 81). his father‘s siblings. Barack found that some racially mixed individuals did not want to consider blackness and what it meant. Frank and grandpa both grew up near Wichita. Barack made friends with several African-American teenagers who had moved to Hawaii from the mainland. his grandmother. 97). 5. In D.236-242. 47-51). 99-100). 1 advised Barack that survival entailed being strong. Frank. 2004. In Hawaii. Notes 1Cullen. completed his son‘s memories and at the end. They were satisfied with being individuals (Obama. In The souls of Black folk. 2004. The phrase ―That‘s how white folks will do you‖ was used by them when evaluating covert or overt racism committed against black people (Obama. he saw the social. pp. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co. p. fairness. and accepts himself. He explained that acts from past and present caused some black people to dislike whites and she was right to be fearful. The alternative was to be cunning and peaceable with the ones holding power (Obama. Obama met his siblings. always respectful toward both her husbands and their cultures. (Chapter 1) http://site. whereas Grandpa could relax and sleep (Obama.) The Riverside anthology of literature . 80). 2004. deplored racism and taught her son important values. 85). 39-41).E.. and empathy toward others. at 5 A. While attending Occidental College. in California. 85). she had been accosted by a black male panhandler who was persistent in asking her for money. C. even Barack had experienced racism. The poet helps the reader to appreciate the fact that one must understand African history and culture in order to appreciate Western and United States history as well as the experience and contributions of black people in the United States and globally. while waiting for the bus. 2004. However. p. and economic issues that African-Americans faced and the bleak future of the youth in that environment (Obama. W. However. 2004. to stay awake and avoid thinking that he had it made and did not need to think about other blacks with less opportunities (Obama.

.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 26 Volume 4.‖ ―I did not bath with water or Reverend Peter Igwilo. a publication of the Widows Development Organization with the support of the Sigrid Rausing Trust. is a master piece depicting creative.. The book also presents a special case study of such practices in neighboring Southeast States. widowhood poems. Research scholars find this book most treasurable because of its attention to statistical details and information on widowhood as contained in pp 26-37. this work is a book of revelation on the problem of widowhood in Nigeria. college/university undergraduates/graduates students. Peter Igwilo The book titled WIDOWHOOD: Facts. read. M.‖ Another said. such as shaving of hair. it also softens and tones down the cruelty and violence to which women are subjugated in many cultures. The most outstanding contribution of the work is to scholarship. (Dr. and excerpts of a 2005 study. Moreover. 40pp. include getting the ‗Facts. but this book provides all three. . wash my hands until after one month of my husband‘s death. Some people have had to talk. Three of the most essential problems in discussing and understanding the global problem of widowhood. school libraries. the laws or the feelings. barbaric and massive abuses in African society. Thick paper back. classroom instruction of high school students. Nigeria. BCC. Dr. edited by Dr. it is most apt and useful for conferences. It makes this book a must-have for all policy makers and legislatures. it covers a wide range of obnoxious topics found in the widowhood practices across-the-board. In fact. to say the least. throughout. The use of colors and artistic design-the pasting of the Feelings. across-the-board this book should enjoy great appeal especially to students of social sciences. disinheritance.‖ ―My blouse was removed. It must be stressed that the language and grammar of the ―Feelings‖ sections were presented verbatim in the book in order to capture the implicit originality in the words. Feelings & The Law Edited by Dr. In addition. quotes and expressions of the widows in order to relay their exact feelings. government agencies. Above all.‘ capturing the ‗Feelings‘ and the availability and correct application of ‗The Laws‘ are succinctly packaged in this book in a most precise. discuss. The dearth of statistics is a bane in conducting research in Africa. seminars. All these treatments depict grave primitiveness.‖ ―I wore one wrapper Ed. African studies. ―If my body became too dirty they would use sand to bath me. Thus it makes the understanding of the widowhood issues even much easier and clearer. routine crying and others. comment or write about widowhood problems. sleeping with the corpse. concise and artistically illustrated style. but they either have lacked the facts. No. Eleanor Ann Nwadinobi is a wife and mother. 1 WIDOWHOOD: Facts. workshops. The book also contains in alarming proportion numerous other cruel. literary and artistic ingenuity of its contributors and editor. and non-governmental organizations. PhD.. and ultimately gives this book its master-piece graphic excellence. UK. Eleanor Nwadinobi Reviewed by Rev. Facts and The Laws together on one page. confinement. Students of criminal justice colleges will devour this book.‖ ―My hands tied up with rags so that I could not scratch my face or eat with my hands. ostracism. 2008.‖ ―No blouse on my chest‖ (p. Enugu. founder and pioneer President of the Widows Development Organization (WiDO) and currently the Sub-Sahara African Regional Chair of the United Nations NGO/DPI Executive Committee). 9). Many people read the book with various degrees of shock because of its content revelations about inhumanities perpetrated in the name of cultures and traditions. Its pictorial illustration makes it the most excellent material to explain to foreigners about human abuse in Africa. not only makes readership and comprehension easy. ―I was asked to sit on the bare floor. considering its content merits and portability. Feelings & The Law. For example. sitting on the floor. Eleanor Ann Nwadinobi. as well as picture stories.

The book cover is thick. Ed. India or China went through before we can make it because our time and natural endowments are better. 90.A Case of Monumental Corruption in Nigeria conjures importance and class for the book. Holden Anele for dedicating this book to some former leaders he applaudes for their so-called positive impacts and contributions to the development of Nigeria. There is also a dividing white bar that links the front and the back cover. Germany. with some white trimmings in the back. Obasanjo has been trusted more than everyone else in Nigeria. great pools of vocabulary from across disciplines. Anele‘s inspiration for the title may have also been evoked by the ―State of the Union Address. and Leadership. Corruption in Politics p. No. To whom more is given more is expected. The way forward is for every Nigerian home and abroad . Chapter one contains Executive Blunders p. 272. 15. ambitions. We are blessed better than any of them. with great clarity of words. Being in a foreign land has to be a choice but not because we have no home. sound exposition of facts and myths in Nigeria and Nigerians. politics. Peter Igwilo. Nigerians cannot wait to be proud of their country and embrace an amazing future where people‘s capacity to achieve their ultimate dreams is limited only by their strength. Other materials contained in the book are Random thoughts p. speaks for itself.to accept failure and the challenge for change. Economic Blue Prints for Nigeria p. but we have gotten nowhere. The frontal cover has a portion of the Map in oxblood red. Rev. IT IS NOT LATE FOR THE NIGERIAN MASSES TO RISE UP AND SAY NO. Holden dedicates this great work to his Parents.A Case of Monumental Corruption in Nigeria Author: Holden C. 2006. where people can live. Eradication of Poverty and Duplicity of IMF p. and patriotism. IF WE SAY NO TODAY IT IS NOT UNPRECEDENTED. analyses. America. 329 and closes it with Works Cited p. shameful rather than shameless. 223. etc. N. Mr. advice and contributions from the standpoint of his career. It is an excellent identification of problems with positive solutions. Transforming Nigeria for the 21st Century p.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 27 Volume 4. Anele Publisher: Duke~C Publishers. Nigeria has disappointed virtua lly everyone including alien investors who had thought Nigeria‘s past leaders were serious. The author approaches his subject matter. The cover design is nothing but awesome. The title of the book State of the Nation . though not applauded is no excuse.. But they failed. Nigeria would not be what it is today because they are the same people mostly trusted to move Nigeria forward. open. The arrangement of material contents o f this book is simple. Computer Science/Biometrics/Adjunct in Computer Information System and a Senior Fraud Investigator with the Bureau of Fraud Investigation in the United States. I differ with Mr. Our blessing is part of our curse. This book is timely because Nigeria is depicted today as a failed state– because of corruption. PhD.‖ in the USA and/or The CN N State of the Union by John King. 164. The subject matter of this book. We need not go through what Britain. transparent. 330. personalities. It has the Map of Nigeria in a black background. Literary Criticism: Presentation of the work is simple. New York. 40. It is miserable. and provides the attraction to read this book. 1 Title: State of the Nation. Anele and Grandparents Chief Chigbu and Agnes Ihim and other Great Nigerians too numerous to mention here. The past and the present have failed? What about the future? WE HAVE ALL FAILED INCLUDING THOSE IN THE DIASPORA WHO TEND TO BLAME THOSE AT HOME. Corruption is in every country and society. 322. M. Nigeria can become a place of pride that has order and rule of law. (NIGERIA/USA) . There is no excuse! It is a collective failure. a great sense of history. State of the Nation -A Case of Monumental Corruption in Nigeria . 325. good illustrations. There is no former leader who did not contribute something positive in one way or another. Their steady move over to other African countries and neighbors in droves does not surprise anybody. 128. willingness and eagerness to excel and do what is right. ISBN-10 1-4243-1286-8 Pages: 333 The Contents of this book is grouped into seven chapters after Preface and Acknowledgements. Nigeria has become a laughing stock and a recruiting ground for terrorist across the world. THE MASSES HAVE FAILED EVEN MORE FOR INACTION. The cover design and the title jointly command some prominence for the book in the committee of other books on the shelf or desk. And what happened? If these positive contributions were enough and true. Its degeneration and continuous free fall leaves no one in doubt but only proves Holden Anele‘s point. Chapters two to seven are arranged in this order: Poverty in a Wealthy Nation p. Nigerians need honest.Elder Joseph and Ezinne. Readers‘ Challenge p. and has mostly failed to lift Nigeria up. Investors who are Nigerians are also moving away. 1st Edition ISBN-13:978 -1-4243-1286-3. About the Author p.the Missing Link p. selfless and first class patriotic leaders. work and coexist in peace and security with world class facilities and good standards of life.

While Valdi was out looking at Ads for another job she stumbled on an Ad that read: Live-in Nanny Position Our babysitter needs a home. Valdi worked at her first babysitting job for three years and was let go because the needs of the girls changed. In America it is extremely hard for the undocumented immigrants because this country is based on money and status. an older lady. She had to figure out a way to survive in America as an illegal immigrant. or being able to pay for school tuition or just maintain their lifestyles: living in America with no papers. friendship. She crawls on the floor! She dances! She clowns! She wrestles! She makes faces! My girls really adore her but our needs have changed. They moved her to the basement right next to the boiler room and then got a dog which they knew she was terrified of. the family began to do things to push Valdi out. and babysitting a white child was a direct reflection of domestic slavery workers. but mainly. whether it is finding a job. it touches on the hardships that illegal immigrants face. included scholarships at foreign universities. betrayal.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 28 Volume 4. The girls were Madam Lucian.. and her three friends. Columbia allowed Valdi to continue on credit for the following semester. but after that was over. who supplements her meager babysitting wages by selling homemade . that situation was going sour. now imagine not even being able to obtain the state ID. Valdi left her native country Trinidad & Tobago at the age of 25 to study at Columbia University in New York on a scholarship. And we want to pass her on to a good family. which is so important in America. However. However. trust. she was still unable to find a decent job. The story is based on Valdi West. the family did allow her to stay in their home until she found another job. Valdi knew she needed to get out of their house. No. you must provide your social security number and fill out the paper work. the firm that provided the financial incentives for the scholarship installed a conservative board that ended “wasteful expenditures” which of course. Valdi explored the one option she was aware of that paid somewhat decent: babysitting on the upper West Side. Even though Valdi had a Bachelor’s degree. Although she was fired. (p. as though Valdi was not capable of that. Valdi never expected to be babysitting to survive in this country mainly because she did not like to be a babysitter. so she began her job search again. 59) Valdi was distraught over this. They needed someone who would be able to help them with school work etc. She was very well educated she did not have to settle for that. When you go to a job interview you must have a State ID and when you have gotten the job. 1 The True Nanny Diaries: A Novel by Nandi Keyi A sneak peak inside the lives of the upper east & west side nannies by Nickehelia Scott The True Nanny Diaries is a novel written by Nandi Keyi. her book is the first “nanny” novel told by the immigrants who do the thankless jobs of domestic work in America. Valdi was unable to continue her goal towards her degree. the ad looked as though the “woman” was advertising her like she was a monkey! Valdi could not handle this and decided to meet up with the girls (other babysitters) at Central Park by General Sherman Statue and show them what the “woman” really thought of her. The novel explores different ideas and themes. and without that there really aren’t many options. Valdi had already obtained a bachelor’s degree at the University of the West Indies and was working on her master’s degree at Columbia before her scholarship ended.

the fact that it is written and told from a West Indian immigrant’s point of view is very inspiring. The woman depended on Valdi more than ever. she felt the family was helping Valdi to find a job but Valdi was just ungrateful. but this is the life of an undocumented immigrant. This novel in my opinion is awesome. After years of sending money to her brother for her house. The author touches on topics others would not understand or know about because they know nothing of how undocumented immigrants live in the U. the “woman” treated Valdi as though she was a domestic slave worker. The issues they face and the challenges they endure because of not having a social security number are incomprehensible. she suddenly valued Valdi’s opinion on matters and even thought of her as a friend. and Valdi found a way to make babysitting work for her. Initially. she did not want the other girls to know about the scandal. Having to deal with someone thinking you are inferior to them just because you work for them is not an easy thing to deal with. Madam Lucian had trusted her and she was not going to go back on her word.S.S. and last Ava. Even after Madam Lucian’s death. but after Valdi showed her intelligence and courage. expressing the voice of true desires. The most trying point of loyalty was when Madam Lucian confided in Valdi. specifically Celie’s letters to Sofia and her sister Nettie. to God. Nandi centered on that of the un- . For most West Indians. that was also Madam Lucian’s dream. was on her way to a government job with legal American status. the author focused on trust and loyalty as themes. The other letters were correspondence between characters. She felt the ad was an injustice. she was surprised at not getting the response she expected. Monica. Madam Lucian was devastated and confided in no-one but Valdi. Celie. mainly because Ava outgrew her friends. She worked for a woman who had a five year old son. Alice Walker focused on the double repression of black women in the American experience. similar to Alice Walker’s The Color Purple. This disagreement began to tear their friendship apart because Ava believed that Valdi was taking advantage of the family and she should try harder to find a job and get out of their home.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 29 Volume 4. The style of The True Nanny Dairies is done in an epistolary form. The letters allowed the characters to display emotions and other private feeling that could not be expressed publicly. Ava did not see it the same way Valdi did. However. and to be able to build a big house back home so when they are tired and ready to leave the U. her life began to revolve around this family. With the help of Ava. most of her income came from her homemade bread business that she ran out of her Brooklyn apartment. who was also a babysitter who lucked up through an arranged “green card marriage”. who also focused on the repression of black women. they would be “set. by using a letter from the main character. He also gambled and drank all of her money and was in fact in jail because it was illegal to gamble in her country. She expressed anger and wanted to know why all the people she loved were constantly hurting. similar to Nandi. she finds out that there is no house.S. all thanks to the family she worked for. However. Valdi wanted to tell the girls that there was no house but she couldn’t because Madam Lucian would not have wanted them to know. The letter to God was written because Celie did not have anyone else to write to. the author introduced the epistolary technique. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree. her motto was “one bread one brick” which means for every one bread sold one brick was bought for her house. Madam Lucian earned a meager salary babysitting. 1 bread from out of her Brooklyn apartment. Her brother lost his own house from gambling. She wanted Valdi to take her secret to her grave. Throughout the novel. Valdi eventually found a job. but now they were so far apart. and believed that Ava of all people would see it her way and understand. No. From the beginning of the novel The Color Purple. therefore.” Well. it is a big dream to work in the U. When Valdi approached them about the ad. who used to be Valdi’s best friend.

she evolves and no longer thought it was acceptable to be beaten by the men in life. Both authors are exceptional writers who appear to love the portrait of a strong black woman. Alice Walker sets her story of Celie’s transformation from a passive female to that of an independent woman within the culture of southern black rural society. References Keyi. even under the harshest conditions. Jovanovich. who imposed the double standard of white society on women. by her husband. The true nanny diaries. But with the help of Shug Avery. but survived through it and turned into women who were extremely independent.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 30 Volume 4. No. Although Alice Walker was criticized for her negative portrayal of black men. and she is no longer angry or being abused. In both novels. she was admired for her powerful portraits of black women. was to everyone including God. the main characters triumphed over adversity and forgave those who oppressed them. her husband’s mistress. Brace. The primary and most prominent theme of both authors was to project a positive outcome in life. A (1982). Celie was abused physically. In the beginning of the novel. Therefore. New York: Harcourt. N. The color purple: A novel. from the 1900’s to the 1920’s. mentally and sexually by men. Celie is shown to be dominated by. many of her social and racial views were expressed throughout the novel. This is to show that she has forgiven everybody and that her story had completely changed. The author contends that black women suffered repression at the hands of black males. 1 documented black women immigrants. (2009). Alice Walker was brought up and very involved in the Civil Rights movement. first her father. New York: Bread for Brick Publishing. Black women also suffered from discrimination by the white society. and then later. The last letter Celie wrote. . Walker. They both showed their characters as women who endured huge amounts of oppression.

com Founders: Marie Linton Umeh Sabine Jell-Bahlsen Ernest N. Marie Umeh. Officers: Marie Umeh. Olabode Ibironke 15.00 $25. Bibliographer North Carolina A&T State University. dramatist.The Flora Nwapa Club Newsletter Page 31 Volume 4. foundation heads. Stamp 24. and publications. NY 10019 (212) 237-8726 Email: Msumeh@aol. Ingse Skattum 22. Letters of nominations should include the full name and mailing address of the nominee. Treasurer Ogbuide Films Sabinejb@aol. Azodo 5. Pamela Smith 23. Davidson & Marie Umeh Please check one of the following: U______Renewal U______New Member U______Institutional Member U______Lifetime Member Y _____ Gift Student Member: $25. and individuals from the world of arts and entertainment.00 $1. Tomi Adeaga 3. Belle Brodzki 8.00 (Which degree?)______ Graduation Date: __________ Name: _______________________________________________________________ Address: ————————————————————————————————-_____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ Organizational Affiliation: ————————————————————————— How did you learn about The Flora Nwapa Society? _______________________________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________ Please remit your dues by cash or check MADE PAYABLE TO: The Flora Nwapa Society c/o Dr. NC muonisi@yahoo. Paule Marshall 20. a list of the candidate’s major works. Suggestions for the 2010 Flora Nwapa Society Award are welcomed. 1 The Flora Nwapa Society Membership Form The Flora Nwapa Society is an international organization affiliated with the African Literature Association. A.com Sabine Jell-Bahlsen. Letters should be addressed to the president by April 15. Ada U. The Flora Nwapa Society Award will recognize an individual who has distinguished oneself in writing and publishing in Africa or in the African Diaspora. CUNY Msumeh@aol. accomplishments. politicians. Obiora Udechukwu 26. President The Flora Nwapa Society c/o English Department John Jay College of Criminal Justice The City University of New York 619 West 54th Street. S. Sabine Jell-Bahlsen 16.com Chimalum Nwankwo.000. Nancy Topping Bazin 6. Dan Glover 14. Andrea Benton Rushing 7. Oty Agbajoh-Olaoye 2. President John Jay College. poet.00 U______Undergraduate Student U______Graduate Student School: ____________________ $10. Nubia Kai 17. A statement of 250 words. Dale Byam 9. Kassahun Checole 10.00 $100. I would like to be a member of The Flora Nwapa Society: AFRICAN LITERATURE ASSOCIATION. Sonia Lee 19.00 $15. The primary goals of the association are to preserve and to promote meaningful research pertaining to Flora Nwapa and her literary production. Irene d’Almeida 12.com . 7th Fl New York. Michael Coleman 11. Greensboro. The Flora Nwapa Society Award is also open to academics and to public figures. indicating the candidate’s achievements and three letters of support are required. essayist. 2010. U. Ernest N. Linda Strong-Leek 25. Willie D. Emenyonu 13. Adetayo Alabi 4. Emenyonu The Flora Nwapa Society Charter Members: 1. journalists. Joseph McLaren 21. such as managing directors.00 $500. No. In honor of Africa’s first female novelist and publisher of the Anglophone world. publisher and politician of the 20th century. The Flora Nwapa Society is committed to increasing awareness of and scholarship about Flora Nwapa as a major African woman novelist.