Things Fall Apart Sexism

Decent Essays

Sexism- "behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex" (Merriam-Webster). Many people believe that sexism is not real or that it has been solved. Neither is true, however, it is still alive and believed in today. Most people know that this is wrong and try not to act sexist, but others take it to the extreme. This idea can be found in Chinua Achebe's book, Things Fall Apart. This book tells the story of the tribe member Okonkwo's life as the British colonize his tribe. Throughout the book, both the tribe and Okonkwo seem to regard females and femininity as lesser beings/things. An example of this could be that all of the tribe, Okonkwo included, agree that an accidental killing is considered a feminine offense and is not as bad as an intentional kill. However, Okonkwo is the main character of this book so we, the readers, see more of his sexist actions such as: not letting his favorite child carry his chair due to her gender, calling all 'cowardly' men …show more content…

In the book, Okonkwo's father was a terrible man. He did not care for hard work and instead, kept borrowing money from his friends and neighbors. His father was so bad that when he died, he left Okonkwo no money, just a huge debt to pay off. Okonkwo then decides to be the exact opposite type of person than what his father was. Okonkwo sees his father's laid back nature as 'feminine' which is one of the main contributors to Okonkwo's sexism. It is just like Linda Strong-Leek says, " is Okonkwo's seeds of self-destruction, which are deeply concealed in his desire to be the antitheses of his "feminine" father." (Strong-Leek). What Strong-Leek suggests here is that the reason Okonkwo cares so much about feminine actions and his extreme sexist attitude is due to his need to be the opposite of his father who Okonkwo deems 'feminine' because his father was not a strong, hardworking

Get Access