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Chigozie Obioma – awards, biography, books written, education, family, big talk

Chigozie Obioma is a notable novelist known for his folktales. His two novels – The Fishermen and An Orchestra of Minorities – were shortlisted for Booker Prize the year both were published. He had his work translated into more than 25 different languages.


He is a Nigerian born in Akure, the southwestern part of Nigeria in 1986. He hails from Abia State and has seven brothers and four sisters. He got inspired by Greek myths and other British writers like Shakespeare and that eventually moved him to tread that part. He speaks Yoruba, Igbo, and English.


Chigozie Obioma’s father is Godswill Obioma and was a staff of the Central Bank of Nigeria and also worked as NECO Registrar before he died. Chigozie Obioma is married to an American and the marriage is blessed with two children.


He is a short story writer, non-fiction writer, and Novelist. As of 2021, he was an Associate Professor of English at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. Chigozie Obioma was a former executive secretary of the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC). He started developing an affinity for the works of Cyprian Ekwensi and Wole Soyinka right from childhood. He was recognized and named the Judge for the 2021 Booker Prize. He is considered an heir to Chinua Achebe because of his outstanding work in writing.


  • Inaugural FT/Oppenheimer Award for Fiction
  • NAACP Image Award
  • LA Times Book Prize
  • Hopwood Awards for fiction
  • Man Booker Prize
  • Digital Book World Awards
  • Nebraska Book Award for Fiction
  • Earphones Award for the Audiobook
  • British Book Industry Award
  • Best Debut Goodreads Author Award


After his primary and secondary education, he attended the Cyprus International University of Michigan where he studied Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. He also studied English Literature at Cyprus International University (CIU).

Books written

The Fishermen                                    2015

An Orchestra of Minorities                2019

He has other short story publications at his stable like:

  • The Great Convert
  • Midnight Sun
  • The Strange Story of the World

He also published many essays like:

  • The Audacity of Prose
  • Teeth Marks
  • Finding the light under the bushel
  • The Ghosts of my Student Years

Big talk

Chigozie Obioma stated that Nigerians are the most suppressed set of people because of how Nigeria is structured. He said it is difficult to love Nigeria. Nigerians have an identity crisis and they are generous but have raised the most extraordinary selfish politicians that heap all resources on their end.

Chinonye Ikebaku

This article was written by Chinonye Ikebuaku.