Rituals Depicted In Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart

Decent Essays
Africa has often been set apart from the rest of the world due to stereotypes. In the eyes of an English voyager, Joseph Conrad, African tribes are just “limbs and rolling eyes” (Heart of Darkness 1899). These dehumanizing statements cause Africa’s culture, history, and traditions to be taken from them and morphed into something different, often something that is not true. If one were to ask someone what they knew about African culture, what would they respond? Most likely, they’d be stumped. But, if you were to ask an African literature professor, their response would be full of African cultural aspects that no one would have believed existed. One of the people that would have a clear answer would be Chinua Achebe. In Chinua Achebe’s book, Things…show more content…
During this ritual, the bride, in this case Okonkwo’s cousin’s wife, is a asked a series of questions where she must answer truthfully and swear upon her ancestors that she has been faithful to her groom since he expressed his desire to marry her. All the female family members from the bride's side of the family return to their village of origin and accompany the bride in this ritual. According to Ibo culture, this is the final ritual that is done which finalizes the marriage between a man and a woman. “Uchendu took the hen from her, slit its throat with a sharp knife and allowed some blood to fall on his ancestral staff. From that day Amikwu took the young bride to his hut and she became his wife” (Achebe, 132). The third cultural aspect Chinua Achebe describes throughout the entire book is the importance of chi (personal god). Through Okonkwo, we see how the chi correlates with what someone wants to achieve and what they can achieve. In Okonkwo, it is evident that one’s personal god, as well as in the way the following Ibo proverb describes it, “when a man says yes his chi says yes also” (Achebe, 27). Throughout the book, this chi is used to judge the accomplishments of the Ibo people. It becomes the
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