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(4) Base Camp

Buchi Emecheta's genius is putting the reader into an entirely foreign world and foreign culture while still making that world accessible to the reader. You won't even notice, as you read, that you're picking up all sorts of cultural tidbits. By the end of the book, you'll have an intimate knowledge of how one's chi (a personal god) influences the events of a one's life, depending on whether the chi is kind of cruel. You'll see how the bride price operates to oppress Ibo women once they're married, and you'll have a fairly good idea of how Western values (through education and work) erodes traditional Ibo values, with women as the greatest losers in all of it.

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