Essay title: Things Fall Apart
Things Fall Apart Things Fall Apart is a sad story of the downward spiral a man has in his life that eventually makes the heartbreaking decision to take his own life. The main character, Okonwo, is a well-respected, wealthy warrior of the Umuofia clan. The Umuofia clan is a Nigerian tribe that is in a group of nine associated small villages.
Okonwo is a man that always gives his hardest efforts to live successfully in world that to Okonwo, only the strong survive. Throughout the story many unfortunate events take place in Okonwo’s life that shape his character into the man he has always wanted to be. In the beginning of the story we learn about the difficult traditions and laws of Okonwo’s clan and its promise to pleasant affairs. One example that takes place throughout the whole story is the sharing of kola nuts and palm-wine which represents the peace and calm of the Igbo. One day, Okonwo’s bitter neighbor approaches him about something that Okonwo’s owes him. The two pray to their spirits and split a kola nut.
The use of a shared oral tradition, mostly a serious of Igbo proverbs, helps to ease several situations throughout the book. Chinua Achebe, the author of the book, challenges the conventional European depiction that African people are nothing but savages. Another idea that readers get in the first few chapters is not only that Okonkwois the protagonist, but also gives us a knowledge of who he really is.
Okonkwo was motivated by his dead father Unoka. Unoka was a weak and cowardly man that always borrowed money and never repaid his debts. He never became a warrior because the site of blood made him sick. Okonkwo wanted to become the opposite of his father and become the manliest man he could be.
He never wanted to pick up traits of Unoka and often acted violently without thinking which regularly created fights. Okonkwo believed his father was a weak man, and the weaker a man was the more feminine they were. Some of Okonkwo’s antics caused problems within the community and he even begins to talk down to some of the not as successful men. The first few chapters almost foreshadow what happens in the rest of the book. In the next few chapters we find out another characteristic of the Igbo culture. This is that within the African population there are many subcultures.
These subcultures all have their own customs and traditions, as well as their own stories. The Umuofia clan is excited when Ikemefuna arrives from his old village because they are eager to hear his stories as well as new folk tales. The author’s use of Ikemefuna coming to Okonkwo’s village shows the readers that the story is not about Africa as a country, but.