Dr Terri Ochiagha BA (Hons), MA, PhD

Dr Terri Ochiagha

Department of African Studies and Anthropology
Honorary Research Fellow

Contact details

I hold a PhD in Anglophone Literatures and Cultures (specialising in African Literature) from Complutense University, Madrid. After a three-year teaching career in a number of Spanish universities, I took up a two-year British Academy Newton International Fellowship at the University of Sussex in 2014. That month, I was conferred a Honorary Research Fellowship here at the Department of African Studies and Anthropology at Birmingham. I am currently writing my second book, based on my research as a British Academy Newton Fellow.

Qualifications

BA (Hons), MA, PhD Complutense University Madrid

Research

My research interests include colonial whiteness, the history and literary representations of British colonial education, first-generation Nigerian Writing, Nigerian Print Cultures, and Life-Writing.

My first book, Achebe and Friends at Umuahia: The Making of a Literary Elite studied the ways in which the secondary education of five first-generation Nigerian writers—Chinua Achebe, Elechi Amadi, Christopher Okigbo, Chike Momah and Chukwuemeka Ike—in the elite British colonial school Government College, Umuahia prompted and influenced their literary careers. Achebe and Friends at Umuahia has just been shortlisted for the African Studies Association UK’s inaugural Fage and Oliver Prize, to be awarded to the author of an outstanding original work published on Africa during the preceding two years. The book has been widely and glowingly reviewed in such periodicals as The Times Literary Supplement, The Times Higher Education, AFRICA: Journal of the International Africa Institute and The Leeds African Studies Bulletin, among other outlets.

I am currently writing my second book, E.H.Duckworth’s Experiments: A Study of Colonial Eccentricity in Nigeria, which examines the life and career of Edward Harland Duckworth, who was originally recruited into Nigeria’s colonial government as Inspector of Education but later made his fame as the founding editor of the cultural and developmental magazine Nigeria. Duckworth was an elusive and liminal figure, upholding Imperial rule while forging alliances with nationalist figures, disseminating a seemingly positive image of Nigeria which was nevertheless fraught with paternalism and unspoken tensions, and championing the country’s youth while at the same time stultifying their possibilities of a university education. Duckworth’s life serves as window into such issues as Nigerian anti-colonial nationalism, print cultures, educational history, colonial domesticity and sexuality, the devolution of power after independence, and British intervention in the Nigerian Civil War.

 

Other activities

  • Peer Reviewer, History of Education, 2016-
  • Peer Reviewer, The Nordic Journal of African Studies (Nordic Association of African Studies), 2015-
  • Peer Reviewer, Mosaic: A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature (The University of Manitoba), 2015-

Publications

Monographs

  • Achebe and Friends at Umuahia: The Making of a Literary Elite (Oxford: James Currey, 2015)

*Shortlisted for the ASAUK Fage & Oliver Prize. The prize is awarded biennially to the author of an outstanding original scholarly work published on Africa during the preceding two years.

*Reviewed in The Times Higher Education, The Times Literary Supplement, Sentinel Literary Quarterly: The Magazine of World Literature, Leeds African Studies Bulletin 77 (Winter 2015-2016), Sankofa: Revista de História da África e de Estudios da Diáspora Africana (9:16 (2016), History of Education: Journal of the History of Education Society (May 2016) and Africa: Journal of the International Africa Institute 86 (May 2016)

Book chapters

  •  ‘Unbottling the Leopard, Unleashing the Critic: A Personal Story of Awakening at the Crossroads.’ Chukwuemeka Ike –50 Years as a Trail Blazing Novelist and Global Icon (1965-2015) Ed. Kanchana Ugbabe. Lagos: Oyster St. Iyke (Forthcoming: 2016)

Journal articles

  • ‘Decolonizing the Mind Onitsha-Style: Reconsidering Ogali A. Ogali’s The Juju Priest’, Research in African Literatures 46.1 (Spring 2015), 90-106.
  • ‘“A Little Book of Logic”: Reconstructing Colonial Arts of Suasion at Government College, Umuahia (1944-45)’ History in Africa: A Journal of Method 41 (June 2014), 63 – 82.
  • ‘The Dangerous Potency of the Crossroads: Colonial Mimicry in Chukwuemeka Ike’s The Bottled Leopard and Chike Momah’s The Shining Ones: the Umuahia School Days of Obinna Okoye`’ The Lion and the Unicorn: A Critical Journal of Children’s Literature Criticism 38.1 (January 2014) 86-105.
  • ‘Reconsidering Coduction: Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart and the Spanish Lay Reader in Intercultural Dialogue.’ Atlantis: Journal of the Spanish Association of Anglo-American Studies: 34.2 (June 2012)
  • ‘Mimetic Desire and the Nigerian Novel: The Case of Chike Momah’s Titi: Biafran Maid in Geneva.’  Contagion: Journal of Violence, Mimesis and Culture: (Official Journal of the Stanford Colloquium on Violence and Religion) 17 (2010)

Scholarly edition

  • Introduction and Edition: ‘There was a College: Introducing The Umuahian: A Golden Jubilee Publication, edited by Chinua Achebe’ Africa: Journal of the International Africa Institute 85.2 (May 2015), 1-30.
  • Achebe’s editorial, the essay ‘Continuity and Change in Nigerian Education’ and O.C. Iloeje’s‘A Tribute to Axiom’, annotated by Terri Ochiagha, appear in the print version of the journal.
  • lThe Umuahian, full volume, annotated by Terri Ochiagha

Selected short essays and reviews

  • ‘Neocoductive Rumiations’, Special Issue on ‘Literature in the World’ PMLA 130 (2016), commissioned by Simon Gikandi.
  • Commissioned review of Kelly M. Duke Bryant’s ‘Education as Politics: Colonial Schooling and Political Debate in Senegal, 1850-1914’, History of Education (Forthcoming, 2016). 
  • ‘Elechi Amadi’, Dictionary of African Biography. Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Emmanuel Akyeampong. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press (2011).
  • ‘Chukwuemeka Ike’, Dictionary of African Biography. Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Emmanuel Akyeampong. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press (2011)
  • ‘Review of Tim Wood’s African Pasts: Memory and History in African Literatures,’Wasafiri 24:2 (June 2009) 

Translation

  • (With Maya García de Vinuesa) Chinua Achebe, A Man of the People (Un hombre del pueblo). Translation and Notes. Barcelona: Random House (2010).