Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe Essays

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Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe is a story about personal beliefs and customs, and also a story about conflict. There is struggle between family, culture, and the religion of the Ibo, which is all brought on by a difference in personal beliefs and customs of the Igbo and the British. There are also strong opinions of the main character, Okonkwo. We are then introduced to the views of his village, Umuofia. We see how things fall apart when these beliefs and customs are confronted by those of the white missionaries.

The authors full name is, Albert Chinualumogu Achebe also known as Chinua, he was born on November 16, 1930 in Ogidi, Nigeria. He is a product of both native and European
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His goal "chi" in life was to obtain great wealth and to have many wives and children. The Ibo people considered these things signs of success. Yet, his greatest goal was his desire to become one of the powerful elders of the clan. It is Okonkwo's inner anger and bitterness over his father's failure that seemed to be the driving force behind everything he did in life. This was evident in the fact that he always felt as though he had to do what was manly and he hated weakness. Just as Okonkwo did not want to be like his father, Nwoye did not want to be like Okonkwo. Nwoye possessed traits that Okonkwo did not such as gentleness, forgiveness, and acceptance. Okonkwo saw these as signs of weakness. "Okonkwo never showed any emotion openly, unless it be the emotion of anger. To show affection was a sign of weakness; the only thing worth demonstrating was strength" (Achebe 28). Okonkwo considered Nwoye to be lazy and wanted him to be a success like himself. "Okonkwo wanted his son to be a great farmer and a great man. . . . I will not have a son who cannot hold up his head in the gathering of the clan. I would sooner strangle him with my own hands" (Achebe 33). This is an example of the difference in personal beliefs among family.

The Igbo people had a very different religious lifestyle than what the British were used to here. Their culture was very different as well. They believed in polytheism