Okonkwo's Downfall in: Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Decent Essays
In the novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, things fall apart for the character Okonkwo because of his character traits. Okonkwo is a very structured man with little patience for whatever he believes is wrong. Some of Okonkwos negative character traits include his violent temper, which gets him in trouble with his religion, clan, family and the missionaries, and his constant battles with his own father which cause him to believe in what is wrong, even if he is aware of what is right. As well, Okonkwo being such a structured man is a good feature of his personal nature, but even this has a negative effect on his life. Okonkwo is an extremely complex character created by Chinua Achebe, and his life falls apart because of all of these…show more content…
In his anger he had forgotten that it was the Week of Peace.(p.25). After this incident, Okonkwo lost much respect from the clan because it was the first time in many years that anyone had committed an nso-ani as Okonkwo did. Okonkwos final violent action caused by his temper was when the messenger for the missionaries proclaimed that the tribal meeting being held must stop. Okonkwo cut the messengers head off, He knew that Umuofia would not go to war. He knew it because they had let the other messengers escape.(.178). Okonkwo did this out of fury and frustration that his tribe was changing so obediently. This was Okonkwos final action because it basically forced him to kill himself or be hung. Okonkwos raging temper was a trait that caused life to be harder for him. It may have made him be seen as a strong, powerful man, but it worked against him at critical times to cause things to fall apart for him.

The missionaries that inhabited Umuofia caused many problems for Okonkwo because of the structure they brought with them. Okonkwo is a painfully structured man. If something is not right with his schedule, like when Ojiugo did not make him his diner, he becomes irrational. Okonkwo always has a plan which seems to always have to change. Just when he figured he would have the highest rank he could achieve in his tribe, his gun explodes and kills a fellow clansman so that he has to flee to his motherland for seven years. Okonkwo then devises a
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