When Things Fall Apart By Chinua Achebe

Good Essays

In Chinua Achebe 's fictional novel, When Things Fall Apart, the reader follows the story of a young man named Okonkwo. Okonkwo is a passionate leader of his tribe, the Igbo. Throughout the book he wishes to please the Igbo people, a one way he does that is by distancing himself from his father. To Okonkwo his father was a disgrace, lazy, poor and cowardice. Okonkwo is first seen wrestling and proving his worth to the tribe. He built his home and earned a reputation of a strong diligent farmer. His reputation is reassured by his good crop and agricultural season, and because of this he earns a large sum of cash. His wealth, influence, and reputation makes him seem like a very suitable man and he marries three women. Later in the book an …show more content…

He is exiled to his mothers homeland, Mbanta, for seven years. He gains knowledge about white missionaries coming to spread Christianity. To Okonkwo this symbolizes a possible end to his tribe. More and more Igbo people convert to Christianity and the religion gains recognition. Okonkwo returns back to the Igbo to find out that his son converted to Christianity. Outraged he disowns his son. The Igbo try to diplomatically solve the intrusion of the white Christians but are stopped and the Igbo leaders are jailed until the villagers pay a ransom. The Igbo 's hold a war meeting, in which the reader finds Okonkwo supporting aggressive action. A white missionary arrives to try to break up the council but is killed by a furious Okonkwo. He continues to spiral downward as his tribe will not support his violent antics. Ashamed of himself and his tribe, Okonkwo 's hubris got the better of him and he then soon later hung himself. Although a fictional piece of work, Chinua Achebe sheds some light on some traditional African culture and society. For me personally it spoke mostly about the roles in African society and how important they are. That many Africans are worried about how the others perceive them. Okonkwo wants to be seen as a respectable, wealthy man. We learned in class that your living, and how sound one is financially can separate them as a respectable superior person. Africans take great pride in themselves and

Get Access