“If you don’t like someone’s story, write your own.”
“Nobody can teach me who I am. You can describe parts of me, but who I am - and what I need - is something I have to find out myself.”
“We cannot trample upon the humanity of others without devaluing our own.The Igbo, always practical, put it concretely in their proverb Onye ji onye n’ani ji onwe ya: “He who will hold another down in the mud must stay in the mud to keep him down.”
"When a tradition gathers enough strength to go on for centuries, you don’t just turn it off one day."
"When the British came to Igbo land, for instance, at the beginning of the 20th century, and defeated the men in pitched battles in different places, and set up their administrations, the men surrendered. And it was the women who led the first revolt."
"When suffering knocks at your door and you say there is no seat for him, he tells you not to worry because he has brought his own stool."
“While we do our good works let us not forget that the real solution lies in a world in which charity will have become unnecessary.”
“It is the storyteller who makes us what we are, who creates history. The storyteller creates the memory that the survivors must have - otherwise their surviving would have no meaning.”
“I would be quite satisfied if my novels (especially the ones I set in the past) did no more than teach my readers that their past - with all its imperfections - was not one long night of savagery from which the first Europeans acting on God’s behalf delivered them”
“That we are surrounded by deep mysteries is known to all but the incurably ignorant.”