Date of Award

Spring 2016

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Sociology and International Studies

First Advisor

Professor Tanetta Andersson

Second Advisor

Professor Seth Markle


This undergraduate senior thesis investigates how Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie conveys the sociological imagination through the fictional characters and plots in Americanah and The Thing Around Your Neck. By conducting an ethnographic content analysis of these books, I investigate the interplay between history and biography, as presented in C. Wright Mills' The Sociological Imagination. The two principal aims of the research are: 1) to explore the historical, structural implications of the current Nigerian diaspora and 2) to illuminate the biographies of contemporary Nigerian women through an intersectional feminist analysis. The theoretical framework is a hybrid of cultural sociology (Griswold) and diaspora studies (Butler). The findings are split into two parts: 1) history, which looks at the structural and diaspora elements of the homeland, hostland, and homeland and 2) biography, which analyzes the intersectionality in the changing positionalities of a diasporic Nigerian female protagonist. Overall, the purpose of this project is 1) to present narrative literature, especially African literature, as sociological knowledge; 2) to understand the contemporary Nigerian diaspora; and 3) to recognize the ability of storytelling to particularize and liberate the marginalized.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and International Studies.