book “Things Fall Apart” written by Chinau Achebe is about the tragic fall of
the protagonist, Okonkwo and the Igbo Culture.
story took place in the village of Umuofia, in the eastern part of Nigeria
during the late Nineteenth Century.
fall apart highlights one man’s unsuccessful resistance to the devaluing of his
Igbo traditions by the British political and religious forces.
like this book because it talks about a rich African history and highlights the
existence of some form of governance, a unique African culture, a judicial
system and a system of belief before the white man came to Africa to introduce
Christianity and the western culture.
of the book” Things Fall Apart” is in Umuofia and Mbanta Villages of the Igbo
tribe in eastern Nigeria, around the nineteenth century
clan has religious systems largely based on their natural environment
surrounded by dense and dark woods, the forest is both respect and feared as a
chief god, the Evil Forest. The god is also revered and feared. As farmers, the
Umuofia rely completely on produce of land and are subject to drought and
flooding. The earth goddess is seen as being in control of the weather and the
productivity of the land. Fear of offending the earth goddess motivates the
punishment for many crimes, such as Okonkwo’s seven years exile for killing a
is huge and tall with bushy eye brows and wide nose that gave him a tense and
intimidating look. Also he has a unique spring like walking style because his
heels hardly touches the ground as though on constant alert to attack. He is
physically stronger than other in his village.
traits include, ruling his household with a heavy hand, a fiery temper,
resentful of failures and weakness, and is fearless.
One of the main conflicts in the story is the
desire that Okonkwo feels to overcome or defeat the legacy of his lazy father, Unoka.
He was ashamed of his father and fought against this throughout his life. He
worked incredibly hard to build his fortune, became a great warrior and
wrestler and refused to show any sign of weakness or emotion as he was terribly
afraid to show anything like his father’s personality.
Another conflict which had to do with
Okonkwo’s temper that it got him into trouble because he could not control it.
He was unable to sit back and participated in the killing of Ikemefuna. He
fired a gun at one of his wives and even beat her during the peace week which
resulted in serious consequences.
cannot accept the changes that Christianity and westernization have brought to
his village. He was already respected as a strong wrestler and by being
unfailingly willing to display traditional masculine behaviors.
he is in exile for killing a man at a funeral by mistake, the town changes so
that Okonkwo values and traditions are no longer the accepted way of doing
things. Christianity draws weaker members of the village and Okonkwo retaliates
by burning down the church. The white man imprison the tribal elders, it is
clear the whites have the upper hand in the conflict between traditional and
new values. To resolve this conflict, Okonkwo hangs himself in violation of his
own tradition. Sadly, this is the only method he knows to extricate himself
from the onslaught of western traditions in his village.
purpose of writing this book was to inform his audience. He presents a complex,
dynamic society to a western audience who perceived African societies as primitive,
simple and backwards, unless Africans could tell their side of the story. He
believes that Africans experience would be mistold. Achebe brings to life an
African culture with a religion, a government, a system of money and an
artistic tradition as well as a judicial system. Achebe’s stereo type the white
colonialist as rigid, most with imperialistic intention, whereas the Igbos are
highly individuals many of them open to new ideals. Achebe depicts negative as
well as positive elements of Igbo culture and he is sometimes critical of his
own people as he is of the colonizers.
this book has had on me made me feel so sad. Most especially the story of
Ikemefuna. Ikemefuna’s last words, in particular “my father, they have killed
me”. He looked to his father for help but is only killed at his own hands.
would recommend this book to a classmate to read such works in order to better
understand the racism of the colonial era. Also it makes one to see Africa in a
different light. We all too often forget what the whole continent has gone
through and also how the coming of the white man has destroyed our ancestors’
WHOM AM I?
a fifteen year old boy from a neighboring clan. From the beginning, I was the
ultimate victim; my fate is completely out of control, I am taken away from my
family so early in life for a crime I did not commit.
new life, I am the subject to the whims of my new father and the elders of his
village in whose hands my fate ultimately lies. Many days, I considered running
away and often cried myself to sleep. But through the compassion and love of my
new father’s wife and the friendship of her son, I did not run away. Even my
new father, a man who fears emotions grows to love me. He even prefers me to
his own son, considers me to be a promising hard working young man.
murder, in which my new father takes a part, haunts him throughout the book,
whom am I?