What is an important theme of Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie?

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One of the most important themes of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah is Americanization. When the novel's protagonist , Ifemelu, returns to her home country of Nigeria after spending years in the United States, her friends in Lagos teasingly call her an “Americanah” because she has picked up new slang,...

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One of the most important themes of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah is Americanization. When the novel's protagonist, Ifemelu, returns to her home country of Nigeria after spending years in the United States, her friends in Lagos teasingly call her an “Americanah” because she has picked up new slang, adopted a more blunt way of speaking, and developed opinions on race, gender, and Nigerian culture that her friends find distinctly Americanized. Adapting to American life was not easy for Ifemelu—she struggled at first to make ends meet, and she had to get used to being seen as black rather than Nigerian—and now she faces the challenges of readapting to Nigeria. Ifemelu is reluctant to acknowledge how much her years abroad have changed her and resists the label of “Americanah,” but it is evident that her life in the US has had a powerful effect on her character and the way she sees and relates to the world. Ifemelu eventually begins to readjust with the help of her old friend Ranyinudo and a club for Nigerians who have recently returned from abroad. Having shut down the popular blog on her experiences as a non-American black woman in the US, Raceteenth, before moving back to Nigeria, Ifemelu starts a new blog focused on her life in Lagos. She may be Americanized, but she is embracing the new life she has begun in Nigeria as well.

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