Analysis of Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Decent Essays
ANDRADE, Maria Ana Ruth D.L.
M.A. Ed. Literature

Things Fall Apart
By Chinua Achebe

“I fear for you young people because you do not understand how strong is the bond of kinship. You do not know what it is to speak with one voice. And what is the result? An abominable religion has settled among you. A man can now leave his father and his brothers. He can curse the gods of his fathers and his ancestors, like a hunter’s dog that suddenly goes mad and turns on his ancestors, like a hunter’s dog that suddenly goes mad and turns on his master. I fear for you; I fear for the clan.”

Things Fall Apart is an African novel written in 1958. The text above was expressed by an old native of Mbanta, the motherland of Okonkwo.

When Okonkwo
…show more content…
Because the Whites knew more about colonization, and government, they successfully brainwashed a number of Africans to assist them in claiming power over Umuofia.
While the Whites were implementing their colonizing tactics, Okonkwo who represented the villagers who believed that the Whites were the enemy, the evil who respected the tribe’s religion (paganism) and laws, expressed his intentions first by convincing his fellowmen to drive the Westerners away and second by killing a White man when he failed to do the former.

The text may be considered postmodern because Achebe leads the readers to believe that there is no hope for the Africans after Okonkwo killed himself. Paranoia exists in the third part of the novel which indicates that a search for order (Lewis, 2001) to the chaos between the Whites and Africans, Christianity and Paganism, White laws and African laws, is fruitless or absurd. The disappointing ending- the death of Okonkwo showed the hopeless situation of the people in Umuofia. It was not only because of the Whites that they fell apart but also for the reason that they themselves- their beliefs, laws fell apart because of the fragility of the identity of a number of them. This fragility of identity is referred to the young generation who were addressed by the quotations above.

Another indication to prove the text’s postmodernism aspect is the presence of irony (Lewis, 2001) in the fate of Okonkwo. He was considered one of the
Get Access