Throughout the tale we see Okonkwo struggle with the problem of emotion. Okonkwo struggles with showing, understanding, and dealing with his emotions. He is quick to anger and slow to affection. As the novel progresses we see him slowly start to show more signs off emotion. In the beginning of the novel we see the narrator state “Okonkwo never showed any emotion openly, unless it be the emotion of anger. To show affection was a sign of weakness; the only thing worth demonstrating was strength” (28). The emotion that we see the most from Okonkwo is most certainly anger. There are many instances when Okonkwo is so quick to anger that the reader and the narrator question his actions. During the week of peace Okonkwo beats his wife Ojiugo for forgetting to come home from a friend’s house in time for their afternoon meal. In this case Okonkwo was “provoked to justifiable anger by his youngest wife.” (29) However Ok...
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...kes his life in his own hands as to assert control over how his life ends. His suicide is a sad and lonely attempt to be independent against the world around him.
The suicide of Okonkwo is not simply the death of a great man but also the suicide of the Ibo voice. Okonkwo was a solid representation for all that the Ibo culture stood for and his death shows how the white man had won. After Okonkwo commits suicide the narrator’s voice abruptly changes to that of the district commissioner. This change of voice shows how the final attempts to halt the white man’s invasion have failed and the white man has overcome the Ibo culture. The Ibo culture has fallen apart and is now in turmoil. Achebe leaves his readers with a sense of distress at how things turn out. His message of inevitable change leaves the readers with a sense of distress for all that has been left behind.
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