In Half of a Yellow Sun, education is depicted as the central necessity to bettering one’s life. Thus, the theme is best understood through Ugwu’s interaction with it, since he is from a world outside the educated university community.
The story begins with the introduction of Ugwu, a boy from a small village, as Odenigbo’s house boy at the university. Ugwu and his family are excited for the monetary opportunity, but we also see how in awe they are of Odenigbo and his house. Similar to Gatsby’s house in The Great Gatsby and Darcy’s in Pride and Prejudice, Odenigbo’s house functions as a symbol of him. Thus, Ugwu’s admiration for the house’s richness, newness, and mystery can be understood as his awe for Odenigbo, a character emblematic of the educated society in Biafra.
Ugwu begins to see his education as essential and seeks to learn as much as he can while working for Odenigbo. Through his time there, and the growth of Odenigbo’s family with Olanna,...
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