What It Takes


by Lola Akande


What It Takes is a sad, vivid expose, of a typical Nigerian University doctorate programme that gleefully cannibalises the best of its own. It is a story of discouragement of excellent academic pursuits, depicting the prevalence of favouritism, ethnicity, nepotism, corruption, lust, needy culture and other negative tendencies currently ravaging the knowledge industry in Nigeria.

The Heroine, Funto Oyewole, a middle-aged and ambitious woman, tells her own story about her dreams, hopes, aspirations, enthusiasms, disappointments and misery as a doctorate student, and how her zeal, high energy and enthusiasm are gradually replaced by frustration and despondency, which hasten her aging process, as her hope of earning a PhD through hard work becomes increasingly elusive.

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Dr Lola Akande is the author of In Our Place, What it Takes and Camouflage. She is a Senior lecturer in the Department of English, University of Lagos, where she teaches African Literature. She has worked as a journalist.