The novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe discusses the rise of an Igbo chieftain who came from great poverty to power and the eventual loss of Igbo traditions, rites, and the influence of his clan through his eyes due to western imperialism and colonialism. The intended audience for this novel is very broad, but if we tried to define it would primarily be people who have not experienced the Igbo culture and westerners or people who speak English. In this essay I will be focusing on the last six chapters: chapters 20 to 25. These chapters highlight the loss of power and customs of the Igbo people who have succumb to colonial rule. I fell Achebe is rhetorically effective and
One of the biggest points Adiche makes in her TEDtalk is that people in Western countries have a single story of Africa- that, in Adiche’s words, it is composed of “people fighting incomprehensible wars, dying of AIDS, and waiting to be saved by a kind white foreigner” (Adiche). Adiche does a wonderful job at giving us a whole new perspective of what people initially might think when they hear the word “Africa.” We get to learn about the culture and religion of Nigeria, clearly expressed from by papa, and the two Fathers. Adiche also integrates Igbo words into the story, allowing for the story to seem more realistic, despite the book not containing a glossary. The exploration of sociopolitical topics is also extremely prevalent. Papa’s work, for one, heavily criticizes the Nigerian government, a risky job that he is praised for. Ade Coker, Papa’s coworker is another symbol of the corruption in the country as he is a strong critic towards the Nigerian government and is later killed by the state. When many people hear the word “Africa” the first thought it not usually brave faces such as Ade, which is why it is important that Adichie gives us close insight on this era in Nigerian
In Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, the reader is taken on a literary journey to a Nigerian tribe, the Umuofia, to experience first-hand the struggles of a warrior named Okonkwo. At first glance, the novel appears to be written for a very specific audience: scholars familiar with Nigerian history, traditions, and culture. However, upon further examination the novel reveals itself to be a striking chronicle of human experiences, universal themes, and timeless struggles that appeal to every human, regardless of familiarity with Nigerian culture. Taken as a whole, the novel appears to be much more than the sum of its parts: syntax, diction, figurative language, imagery, repetition, and symbols. Things Fall Apart is a novel with literary merit—and lots of it.
Throughout “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe, aspects of Igbo culture are presented to the reader in order for them to obtain a grasp on how people from a part of Africa live. For the majority of Part I, different sides of Igbo culture are relayed to the reader predominantly through the 3rd person, as well as through the perspective of Okonkwo, in order to gain the understanding that these people do indeed, have a rich, intricate, and sophisticated way of life. However, things turn for the worse and in Parts II and III, where Achebe recreates the conflict between European and Igbo cultures at the turn of the twentieth century by focusing on the cataclysmic changes introduced by the forces of Christianity and colonialism, and how they destroyed the strong foundation of the once proud Igbo people.
Preconceived ideas about one’s culture often arises from stereotypes passed down from generation to generation. It is those stereotypes which shape one’s way of thinking, without being educated properly. In the novel Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe, misunderstood culture is what drives the story of a small African clan called the Umuofia and the life story of Okonkwo, a fearless warrior and farmer. An in-depth look into pre-colonial African culture helps the reader discover and understand an unbiased point of view of a world one may not understand. In doing so, Achebe uses imagery as well as strong narration to describe the cultural norms and activities that the Nigerian tribe undergoes in everyday life. Through this he offers a nonbiased point of view, and communicates and accurate picture of pre-colonial African culture to a western reader.
Things Fall Apart (1958) is a fictional novel by Chinua Achebe that examines the life the Igbo tribe living in a rural village called Umuofia in Nigeria during the early 19th century. The central values of the novel revolve around status, virtues, power, and traditions that often determine the futures and present of the characters in the Achebe story. The novel shows the life of the protagonist Okonkwo and his family, village, and Igbo culture and the affects of colonisation of Umuofia on him and the people of his village by Christian missionaries. In this essay, I plan to look at colonialism in the novel before and after and the impact on Okonkwo and the village Umuofia and examine how
The impact of Ikemefuna’s death on Nwoye is devastating. Something gives way inside of him when he thinks of his father and the killing of Ikemefuna. The fear of his father and the horror over the sacrifice of Ikemefuna separates Nwoye from tribal customs and the sense of community. His family’s banishment isolates him further. Hearing the Christian hymns, which cater to
Thus, it is no surprise that the Christian missionaries captivate Nwoye upon their arrival. As the missionaries sing a hymn, Nwoye reflects that “it was not the mad logic of the Trinity that captivated him. He did not understand it. It was the poetry of the new religion, something felt in the marrow. The hymn about brothers who sat in darkness and in fear seemed to answer a vague and persistent question that haunted his soul—the question of the twins crying in the bush and the question of Ikemefuna who was killed.” (Achebe 147). Nwoye’s reaction to the missionaries’ hymn reflects his hidden love for art that he shares with his grandfather, Unoka, who Okonkwo despises as a lazy degenerate. Nwoye’s passion is entirely incompatible with Okonkwo’s belief that songs are a waste of time and sign of weakness and with Ibo culture, which values aggression and physical prowess, not peacefulness and creativity. The missionaries offer something Nwoye has unknowingly hoped for since childhood: a way to escape this restrictive life. Okonkwo’s violent reaction upon learning that Nwoye has been watching the missionaries is the breaking
Chinua Achebe was a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor and critic. He is mainly known for his trilogy that investigates, using fiction, the history of Nigeria. The trilogy begins with Things Fall Apart, followed by No Longer at Ease and ended with Arrow of God. Furthermore, in this critically analytical essay, through a feminist perspective, a chapter of his second novel, No Longer at Ease, published in 1960, will be discussed. The setting of the novel is Lagos, Nigeria and Umuofia, Nigeria during the 1950s, before Nigeria attained independence from Great Britain. The novel, No Longer at Ease begins with Obi Okonkwo on trial, charged for accepting a bribe. However, using flashback, the author takes us back to the point before Obi’s departure
This paper reflects the novel “Things Fall Apart” written by Chinua Achebe in 1958. Achebe gives an overview of pre-colonialism and post-colonialism on Igbo, detailing how local traditions and cultural practices can “fall apart” in some scenarios through some introduced, externally created hassles elevated because of colonization. The protagonist named Okonkwo mentioned in the story is a proof showing the lifestyle of the tribe. My main objective and focus is to lay emphasis on Africa specifically the Igbo society, before and after the arrival of the Europeans in Umuofia community; the results of their arrival concerning Igbo culture, thus leading to the clash of cultures between the two categories. I will also draw on post-colonialism with respect to globalization.
In a freezing class, two brilliant minds unlocked the fiery passion that is their talent one an artist the other a writer. Bringing to light a history long forgotten creating abstract thoughts arbitrary to our own. Komi Olaf the artist and Okey Ndibe the writer not only enlightening the class but also the world with each brush stroke and each word. Every creation stemming from the hands of these masters tell of issues at the heart of Africa from colonialism to existential dilemmas. Thru spoken word, hip-hop, art, music, poems and literature issues close at heart to the artists and to Africa are portrayed. This paper will focus on the art exhibit by Komi Olaf and Foreign Gods inc by Okey Ndibe as spoken by them during their discussion in the class on October 13th. Where the talks focused on the key course objectives being stereotypes, post-colonialism, youth culture, and resistance.
In Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, the Igbo culture experienced tremendous changes before, during, and after the colonial period as clearly illustrated by the writer. For instance, at first, we notice that there were well established social-economic and political structures in Nigeria based on their traditional customs. They had clansmen, members of the can and village elders. Each of these individuals played a particular role in the community. The Igbo people had a unity of purpose as well as a strong believe and faith in their traditional way of life. However, this was not the case when missionaries invaded their ancestral land. Enormous changes were witnessed. Among them include the conversion of people from their traditional beliefs and customs to Christianity, building of schools so as to introduce education to Nigerians, interference of roles, and gender relations among various families members just highlight but a few. Thus, in this paper, my primary objective was to vividly explore the changes that were experience by the Igbo in the Things Fall Apart during colonization and antithetically compare them in a very comprehensive manner with the concept of international development in the contemporary society i.e., past the colonial period. I have therefore made a hypothesis that the changes which took place in Nigeria Igbo community during and after colonization were of two types: there were those that significantly contributed to development, as well as those whose
“Ghana’s history is a metaphor for what occurred in the immediate aftermath of independence in Africa,” is a quote by Kofi Awoonor, Ghana’s leading literary figure and one of Africa’s most acclaimed authors. Three of his poems illustrate the hardships and trials that the Africans faced after their claim of independence from Britain. As said by Awoonor himself, “...high hopes were crushed by the greed, corruption, and lust for power…”. The author uses multiple literary devices as a way to emphasize the adversities they faced. Kofi Awoonor symbolizes the downfall of Ghana after independence through the use of theme, mood, and symbolism in his Three Poems.
The Igbo Tribe went through plenty of changes. They had their own way of living, but when the Christians arrived they brought new ideas and traditional ways to the Igbo. Throughout the novel “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe, the author uses mood, irony, and foreshadowing to capture the audience’s attention and show that death affects everyone.