2016 Student Research Conference:
29th Annual Student Research Conference

Blooming Into Independence: Kambili's Transformation in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Purple Hibsicus
Ariana N. Hetland
Dr. Hena Ahmad, Faculty Mentor

The protagonist in Purple Hibiscus, fifteen-year-old Kambili, lives in terror of her father, Papa Eugene. While admirable to others, Kambili's father is actually a fanatical Catholic who punishes his children and his wife for their sins by physically hurting them. Because of this, Kambili and her older brother Jaja are extremely obedient and never question their father's wishes, desires, or orders. Kambili only concerns herself with what her father will think of her actions and words. However, while staying at their Aunt Ifeoma's home, the children are exposed to a much less structured lifestyle that includes laughter and joy. This environment quickly encourages Jaja to become questioning, and eventually Kambili, too, realizes that perhaps life is more than simply pacifying her father. This paper will chart the trajectory of Kambili's personal transformation from an obedient daughter to a questioning one.

Keywords: Purple Hibiscus, Kambili, personal transformation, coming-of-age


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: -2
Location: VH 1328
Time: 1:15

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