Things Fall Apart Essays

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In the novel, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, structured gender roles are depicted as a fundamental part of Igbo life. All life in the culture is gender specific from who can tend to which crops, to how punishments are dealt out. The novel’s protagonist, Okonkwo, primarily focuses on exaggerating...

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INTRODUCTION Things Fall Apart is an African novel written by famous Nigerian author Chinua Achebe. The novel chronicles the life of Okonkwo, the leader (chief) of an Igbo community. It follows the events leading up to his banishment from the community for accidentally killing a clansman, through the seven years of his exile, to his return. It also addresses problems of emergent Africa—following the intrusion in the 1890s of white missionaries and colonial government into tribal Igbo society. The novel,...
5 Pages 2252 Words
In the novel, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, gender stereotypes profoundly influence the entire village, the Ibo society has a strict system of behavioral customs that are assigned by gender. They have restricted the freedom of Ibo women to present that Ibo men are superior to women and gender plays a large role in the novel as it is structured around gender roles, masculinity and femininity. The roles of male and female have been controversial since the beginning of...
3 Pages 1233 Words
Introduction: Unveiling the Complexities of Masculinity in Igbo Society No singular work of the twentieth century explores the complexity of the Igbo tradition and its ties with concrete nativism and toxic masculinity like Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart does. This adorable story, set in in the transition period that straddles the pre-colonial Igbo society and the time of the arrival of the Europeans, i.e. during the late nineteenth century revolves around Okonkwo as the epicenter of the ideas that the...
6 Pages 2591 Words
During the 19th century, the traditional values of the Igbo people clashed with the values of western culture (Osei-Nyame 149-150). More specifically, the ideas of gender roles presented in Achebe’s Things Fall Apart contrast how the Igbo people view the role of men and women. During this time period, western literature did not appropriately depict African culture, therefore, Achebe gave more first-person insight into their culture (Adichie). On the surface of this novel, women are seen as submissive and obedient...
3 Pages 1522 Words
Imperialism in “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe, Imperialism refers to the extension of one country’s authority or control over another territory. Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart” covers extensively the impact of colonization on Igbo society. The arrival of the British Missionaries in the 19th century caused great destruction of the Igbo lifestyle and culture and resulted in the collapse of the Igbo religion and caused social disorder among the Igbo people. The Igbo culture bestowed with much richness was...
2 Pages 1090 Words
In the novel 'Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, the story of Umuofia, a fictionalized village set in Nigeria, is told. The novel details Umuofia as a pre-colonized village, allowing the reader in on their customs and traditions, all the way to a colonized Umuofia; where the story ends. Throughout this story of colonization, many themes are displayed. Masculinity in 'Things Fall Apart is one of the first apparent and recognizable themes to the reader as the story is being...
3 Pages 1279 Words
The African novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Abbane is a story of how the beginnings of the colonization of Africa affect the Igbo people, specifically one man named Okonkwo. The novel is a tragedy because it shows how the community unravels and Okonkwo’s inability to deal with the new way of life in his community. Things Fall Apart is more specifically a Shakespearean Tragedy because it has the aspects of a tragic hero with flaws, struggle between good and...
2 Pages 763 Words
Thesis Things Fall Apart focuses and analyses Igbo society as shown in the novel, before and after arrival of missionaries to Umuofia, which led to clash of cultures. It also incorporates critical theory to analyze the novel. It is based on post-colonial criticism, as it is relevant to Achebe’s writings in Things Fall Apart. For example, post-colonial criticism chiefly deals with literature critiques from countries subjected to colonial rule. As Achebe hailed from Nigeria, a colony of Britain, some elements...
6 Pages 2806 Words
Things Fall Apart, written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe, was written in 1958. The novel’s plot revolves around the clan of Umofia, a culmination of nine villages on the lower Niger in Africa. The clan is quite powerful, populated, advanced, and skilled at war. Okonkwo, the main character, is praised among the Umofians. He is the son of his effeminate father, Unoka, and strives throughout the book to model the opposite character traits. He is driven, brave, violent at times,...
2 Pages 902 Words
Things Fall Apart is a novel written by Chinua Achebe. The setting is during the late 19th, early 20th century in a village named Umuofia in Nigeria. When reading this novel the time period is important because it was a period in colonial history when the British were increasing their influence economically, culturally, and politically in Africa. The novel is about the rise and fall of Okonkwo, a man from the village of Umuofia. Throughout the novel Oknokwo is shown...
2 Pages 930 Words
Introduction to Feminist Criticism and Gender Studies Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Women (1792), John Stuart Mill's The Subjection of Women (1869) and the American Margaret Fuller's Women in the Nineteenth Century (1845) has started the struggle for identity of women writing imposing the socio-political, economic rights of women. These writers and their works formed the base for feminist criticism and gender studies. A lot of questions were raised against the primitive notions of man-woman relationship inferiority...
4 Pages 1828 Words
In this essay I am going to analyse the tragic role of the central character from the novel “Things Fall Apart” written by the Nigerian author Chinua Achebe in 1958, Okonkwo, who goes from having a good life and power within his clan to being a man driven to death by his misery and his misfortune. I will use the guidelines provided by Aristotle in order to demonstrate that Okonkwo falls within the tragic hero profile established by the Greek...
2 Pages 1012 Words
Throughout the beginning of Things Fall Apart, one of the most notable symbols is Okonkwo’s pride. Okonkwo is portrayed as a very prideful man, who is driven entirely by his ache for status and ability to be “manly.” He is afraid of becoming like his father and becoming a coward lacking pride, and unable to support his family. This pride symbol between the concepts of masculinity and femininity is notable because Okonkwo uses his pride to motivate him into taking...
2 Pages 949 Words
Cesar Chavez once said, “Preservation of one’s own culture does not require contempt or disrespect for other cultures.” Respecting other cultures is very important if you want to have peace within your own culture. In the book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, Western missionaries introduce new thoughts and beliefs into the Ibo society. The changes that were brought into the Ibo society caused major conflict between the two cultures and eventually led to the downfall of the Ibo culture....
2 Pages 765 Words
Whether a reader notices it or not, every form of literature has some form of organization. The elements that are organized that make a story great are, but not limited to, plot, setting, and characters. But of course, authors don’t have to have these elements in sequential order all of the time, nor do they have to use all of them. Because of this organization, the reader can be left either feeling satisfied or unsatisfied with the piece of work....
3 Pages 1608 Words
Reputation and respect in Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe play a substantial role in the main character and protagonist of the novel, Okonkwo’, actions and dictates how the people in Umuofia are seen. If a man’s status doesn’t meet the requirement set by society, one is almost useless. The better the reputation, the more respect is given. To the men of Umuofia, reputation is essential and deemed as vastly important. One who may have multiple debts and is unable...
2 Pages 899 Words
In 1958, the news of Chinua Achebe’s newly published book, Things Fall Apart spread like wildfire throughout the crowded streets of Africa, at last giving the Africans what they have always longed for: a novel about European colonialism in an African perspective. Before the publication of Things Fall Apart, most novels about Africa were written by the Europeans who characterized Africans as savages in need of Barack Obama, in an endorsement on the back cover of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall...
4 Pages 1654 Words
His suicide is his prescribed fate and his punishment for his mistakes in life for which he is responsible. As Achebe wrote in his work Morning Yet on Creation Day the people of Igbo believed that : “…when a man’s misfortune is somehow beyond explanation [it] can only be attributable to an agreement he himself must have entered into, at the beginning, alone with his chi; for there is a fundamental justice in the universe and nothing so terrible can...
5 Pages 2105 Words
For many years, in a lot of societies, women were oppressed, discriminated against, and ill-treated and the Igbo society is no different. Women of the Igbo were either in a high position and worshiped like goddesses, or abused, insignificant, and demolished, and the last is more common. Things Fall Apart is about the culture, tradition, and believes of the Igbo community in Nigeria. The novel follows Okonkwo, a man who his whole existence is shaped by his fear, he is...
1 Page 531 Words
Although the roles of Okonkwo’s wives in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart appear very different from women today, much of that is actually superficial. Certainly women in Igbo society were expected to cook, clean, and raise the family. They were also expected to help with the crops as needed. This is honestly not so different from early to mid-1900’s in the United States, and even in many farming and ranching families in our local community today. Women’s “values” were also...
2 Pages 806 Words
Things Fall Apart was known in its time as an extremely original book. It is responsible for the boom in African-written stories that drastically changed perspectives of African colonization and life. Not only was it known for being a novel that inspired African authors to write their own stories, it was also a unique blend of African storytelling techniques and imitations of English poems and books. Despite this innovative style, many argue that it takes the form of a classical...
2 Pages 881 Words
Things Fall Apart is a 1958 novel written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe. The first book in a trilogy, Things Fall Apart is Chinua Achebe’s magnus opus and is regarded as one of the greatest works of modern African literature. It is a staple of school curriculums throughout Africa and is studied extensively in many English-speaking countries. Set initially in pre-colonial Nigeria, Things Fall Apart tells the story of an Igbo man named Okonkwo, a member of the fictional clan...
2 Pages 1046 Words
The ‘Human Condition’ is used to reference the qualities that comprise the imperatives of human existence. Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart,” is one of literary merit, attracting readers worldwide for its use of universal themes. “Things Fall Apart” takes readers into Umuofian society, where Okonkwo is initially regarded as a warrior of the clan. As the story develops forward and into the changes that meet the traditionalistic clanspeople, Okonkwo is proved to be comprised of many fatal flaws, creating a...
1 Page 452 Words
Although Chinua Achebe’s novel, Things Fall Apart is the broadly read African novel, the failure of its main character leaves readers with many unanswered questions. Central to the many questions is why Achebe allowed the aspiring but brutal young person to take away his life at the time everyone looked unto him? Other commentators argue that Okonkwo’s pride and anger contributed to his downfall while others blame the fragmentation of the Umuofia society coupled with cultural destruction by the white...
3 Pages 1235 Words
The author is largely successful in developing a blend between the English language and the culture of the Ibo people. Using this European language to define various unfamiliar words, explain customs, fabricate ways of thinking and translate metaphors creates the illusion of an African language while still being accessible to individuals in this English dominated world. For the whole of the novel Achebe inserts Ibo words that can either be defined by the reader through evidence from the text or...
2 Pages 877 Words
Season of migration to the north by Tayeb Salih and Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe considerably enhance readers’ knowledge on hybridity through describing cultural hybridity, exposing effects of colonialism on native cultures, and challenging Eurocentric stereotypes. Season of migration to the north provides a unique narration on the colonial experience in Africa. Written about Sudan by a Sudanese author, it provides remarkable insight into the world it seeks to describe. To provide this awareness, Salih uses the character of...
2 Pages 1116 Words
Is change always positive or is it negative, and can it hurt societies? The Author of the book, Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe exposes different reactions to people and change. Things Fall Apart is based in an Igbo village in Nigeria in the late 1800s to early 1900s. The story is based around a strong independent man named Okonkwo who works hard and holds a high power in his village, Umuofia. Okonkwo has troubles with his mind of being stronger...
3 Pages 1491 Words
The book “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe is a fictional story based around the cultural and social life of an African tribe of the lower Niger River region. It depicts the daily life of the tribe and its members. It additionally shows the culture and customs of the tribe. The book focuses on one of the tribe members, Okonkwo. He is a well-revered member of the tribe. Okonkwo is a good example of a respected member of the tribe...
3 Pages 1212 Words
The novel, The Dead by James Joyce begins with the character, Gabriel and his wife, Gretta arriving at an annual dinner party. At this party, Gabriel has different encounters with several different people. Throughout The Dead, themes begin to reveal themselves, jealousy and masculinity/male pride, as well as anti-nationalism, death, and women. The second novel I will be looking at is Things Fall Apart, which is a book by Chinua Achebe that is about a man named Okonkwo who is...
5 Pages 2488 Words
The novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe has been influenced by Oedipus Rex by Sophocles. The protagonists of both these works are similar because Okonkwo and Oedipus are both successful, they both have a flawed character, and they both experience a demise. ​Things Fall Apart’s protagonist Okonkwo and Oedipus Rex’s Oedipus are similar in that they are both successful. Both of these characters, Okonkwo and Oedipus, are both famous, well known, and their people admired them. In the book...
4 Pages 1625 Words

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