Chigozie Obioma's Profile Image
James E. Ryan Associate Professor of English

For bookings and correspondence regarding my literary works, please contact Bill Clegg at

Selected Publications and Projects


An Orchestra of Minorities. Little, Brown and Company, 2019.

The Fishermen: A Novel. Little, Brown and Company, 2015.

Short Fiction and Non-fiction

“Spiders in the House of Men.” Esquire UK, January/February 2020.

“Strange Story of the World.” Granta Online, December 2019.

“Midnight Sun.” NewStatesman, 2016.

“The Great Convert.” Transition Magazine Issue 114, 2014.

“Fishermen.” Virginia Quarterly Review, 2011.

“The Desire To Unlearn A Foreign Language”: Paris Review Daily (2019)

“Finding The Light Under The Bushel: How One Writer Came To Love Books.” New York Times, December 2018.

“Life-Saving Optimism: What the West Can Learn From Africa.” The Guardian, July 2018.

“Africa Has Been Failed By Westernisation.” The Guardian, November 2017.

“Èkó ò ní bàjé: The growth of Lagos City.” The Guardian, February 2016.

“Ghosts of My Student Years in Northern Cyprus.” The Guardian, January 2016.

“Teethmarks: The Translator's Dilemma.” Poets and Writers, January/February 2016.

“Audacity of Prose.” The Millions, June 2015.

Awards and Honors

2x Booker Prize for Fiction - Shortlist

The NAACP Awards for Debut Book - Winner

The Inaugural FT/Oppenheimer Awards - Winner

LA Times' Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction - Winner

Internationaler Literaturpreis – Winner

Man Booker Prize for Fiction - Finalist

The Guardian First Book Award - Finalist

Center for Fiction First Novel Prize - Finalist

Edinburgh Festival First Book Award - Shortlist

The International Dylan Thomas Prize - Longlist

Named one of FP's 100 Leading Global Thinkers of 2015

Summary of Teaching Philosophy

I teach creative writing courses with an eye towards discovering the aesthetic goals of the writer and helping students better master those goals. I stake the presupposition that the best fiction is produced when plot becomes a function of character, and thus direct them to focus on characters first and that once this is achieved, everything else—structure, political commentaries, plot, language, themes—falls into place. To facilitate this goal, I base the courses on the method that best helped my own development as a writer, a method predicated on the principle: Read a hundred books, write one.

Teaching Awards

UNL Certificate of Recognition for Contribution to Students (2019)

Courses Regularly Taught

Advanced Fiction Writing: Conceptual Fiction

The Short Story

Graduate Fiction Writing Workshop

Introduction to African Literature


M.F.A. (2014), University of Michigan

B.A. & M.A. (2012), Cyprus International University

Areas of Interest


Literary Studies (Metaphysical Literature, Mystical and Conceptual Realities in Fiction, African Diasporic Literature)

African Literature and Poetics

Religion and History