Status of Women in Things Fall Apart

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The Role and Status of Women When reading Segu and Things Fall Apart, the role of women is a major part of each novel. Their roles are alike in some ways but at the same time they have some slight differences. In Achebe’s text, women do not seem to be of much importance in their day to day life, but they are crucial to the spiritual wellness of their culture. In Conde’s text though, the women are much more respected by the people in their tribe. The level of reverence for women differs greatly in each novel. In Things Fall Apart, women were often abused for anything they may have done wrong. For example, Okonkwo beat his second wife twice, once because she was late returning home and had not yet prepared his meal. He was then…show more content…
One last example of how the women of the Bambara were seen as property was when Dousika passed away in part two and his first wife Nya was handed down to his younger brother, Diemogo. “If Nya now refused to marry Diemogo as tradition prescribed, she would have to go back to her own family” (Conde 144). Women had no say in the matter, even in her case, the two of them never got along but she still had no choice unless she wanted to be without her children. It also seemed as though the men held a double standard in the Ibo village when it came to the respect of women. They constantly abused their women of the tribe, but yet highly regarded the priests of their religion whom were also female. Everyone from near and far came to consult Chielo, the priestess of Agbala and the oracle of the hills and caves (Achebe 42). Another female character whom they valued greatly was Ani. She was the earth goddess and the source of all fertility (Achebe 31). Every year they even held a special occasion, the Feast of the New Yam, in order to give thanks to her. The men would never question these females and would always listen to them and praise them, but they did the opposite and did not care what their own women had to say about anything. The women of Things fall apart and Segu really had no identity of their own. They were more so known by the second wife, the third
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