Critical Analysis of "Apollo" Short Story by Chimamanda Adichie

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About this sample

About this sample


Words: 428 |

Page: 1|

3 min read

Published: Jan 31, 2024

Words: 428|Page: 1|3 min read

Published: Jan 31, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Cultural Identity
  2. Colonialism
  3. Personal Agency
  4. Conclusion

Apollo is a renowned Nigerian author and feminist who is widely recognized for her exceptional literary works. One of her most compelling short stories is "Apollo," which explores complex themes such as cultural identity, colonialism, and personal agency. In this essay, a critical analysis of "Apollo" will be conducted, examining its themes of cultural identity, colonialism, and personal agency.

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Cultural Identity

Cultural identity is a vital part of who we are, and it often shapes our perceptions, beliefs, values, and behavior. In "Apollo," the protagonist struggles with her cultural identity as she grapples with her Nigerian heritage and European upbringing. The story explores the tension between the protagonist's cultural roots and her quest for self-actualization, questioning the impact of cultural identity on self-discovery and personal growth. Additionally, the story examines the ways in which colonialism has influenced the protagonist's sense of cultural identity. It portrays how the colonial legacy continues to shape the cultural identity of characters in modern-day Nigeria.


Furthermore, the story highlights the role of colonialism as a dominant force in the lives of characters in the story. It underscores the impact of European imperialism on Nigeria's political, social, and economic landscape. Adichie's portrayal of colonialism highlights the exploitative nature of imperialism, and the impact it has on individuals within the colonized society. The story reflects the harsh realities of colonialism in the way it disrupted the traditional social systems in Nigerian societies. It underscores how colonialism has eroded cultural traditions and exacerbated social divisions, leading to cultural conflicts.

Personal Agency

Moreover, Adichie explores the quest for personal agency and the limitations placed on individuals due to societal norms and expectations. The story portrays the protagonist's desire for freedom and the challenges she faces as a woman in a male-dominated society. She grapples with the constraints of patriarchal norms, which limit her choices and opportunities. The story highlights the limitations women face in their quest for personal agency, underscoring the need for a more inclusive and equitable society.

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In conclusion, Chimamanda Adichie's "Apollo" is a thought-provoking exploration of complex themes such as cultural identity, colonialism, and personal agency. The story highlights the impact of colonialism on individuals within the colonized society, emphasizing the exploitative nature of imperialism. Additionally, the story underscores the quest for personal agency and the impact of societal norms and expectations on individual freedom. Overall, "Apollo" is a powerful literary work that reflects the complexities and challenges of modern-day Nigeria, and the broader struggles of post-colonial societies. It provokes thoughtful reflection on the meaning of cultural identity, colonialism, and personal agency, and has a lasting impact on its readers.

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This essay was reviewed by
Dr. Charlotte Jacobson

Cite this Essay

Critical Analysis of “Apollo” Short Story by Chimamanda Adichie. (2024, January 31). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 22, 2024, from
“Critical Analysis of “Apollo” Short Story by Chimamanda Adichie.” GradesFixer, 31 Jan. 2024,
Critical Analysis of “Apollo” Short Story by Chimamanda Adichie. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 22 Jul. 2024].
Critical Analysis of “Apollo” Short Story by Chimamanda Adichie [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Jan 31 [cited 2024 Jul 22]. Available from:
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