Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart Essay

Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart Essay

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Something which resonates with the Australian student in Chinua Achebe’s novel Things Fall Apart is the tragic loss of an Indigenous culture. Achebe employs structural elements to highlight the suppression and subsequent loss of the Ibo culture. The author shows how the Ibo culture is enveloped by the more dominant British culture as the novel progresses.
The author constructs the loss of culture through the employment of a three part structure: the pre-colonial, exile and post-colonial section. This allows the reader to establish the differences between before and after the arrival of the British. It illustrates how Ibo culture was slowly, but surely lost. The structure of the first part is repetitive to reinforce the length of time the Indigenous culture has existed for. The second part of the novel acts as a time of change and almost as an ‘interval’ before the main show. By the concluding part of the novel, the reader is prepared for the ultimate downfall of Okonkwo and by extension, his tribe.
The first part of the novel is by far, the longest section. It circulates around the daily life and rituals of this particular tribe. The orientation of the novel is repetitive to show the length of time this tribe has been here. The usage of quotes such as “…farmers had not planted their yams yet…” on Page 14 and “…children no longer stayed indoors but ran about singing…” on page 33 shows how entrenched these behaviours are for these people. The purpose of this is to reinforce the depth of the culture. The tribe followed a structured lifestyle that was not interrupted by any externalities.
The author’s employment of sound in the orientation phase of the novel further emphasises the ever-lasting state of the culture. Celebratory soun...


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...culture and world religions. He uses the structure of the novel Things Fall Apart to show the impact the white government had on the Nigerian people and the aftermath of their broken culture. Through the contrasts in the linear structure, the author warns the reader and makes them see how easily imperialism can occur.
Chinua Achebe has exposed the different structural makings of Things Fall Apart to highlight the demise of Ibo culture after the arrival of British colonials. This is a theme he constantly writes upon in his novels. The opening of the novel is metaphorically the tribe in its glory as it existed for many years. The second part of the text symbolises the speed with which a culture can be removed, and the final part of the novel is quickly paced and contrasts sharply with the focus in the first part; it symbolises the death of a culture and its swiftness.

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