He transferred his fears into the context of Umuofia and the traits that society valued, but what was really the driving force in his decisions “was the fear of himself, lest he should be found to resemble his father” (17). The values of Umuofia resembled the polar opposite of what Unoka was and Okonkwo twisted his motivations around in his mind and presented them to himself and the community as derived from Umuofia’s traditions. From this delusion, Okonkwo established his ultimate goal of becoming a revered member of the village, possessing many titles, and achieving anything necessary displaying his prominence in the
In the book “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe certain themes are present in the the
Okonkwo is on two ends of a stick. Sometimes he can be shown to be a caring, sympathetic character, but others he is shown as a ruthless person that is very unsympathetic person. Okonkwo is a man of action that would rather solve things with his fists rather than talking it out. He is a great wrestler hailing from the Umuofia clan that has thrown Amalinze the Cat. Okonkwo is also a very good farmer, where he has been able to grow two barns worth of yams. He is someone that doesn’t know how to control themselves when they get angry as he will then resort to violence. Okonkwo’s family relationships make him a sympathetic character because of his caregiving nature and hospitality and he is shown to be an unsympathetic character because of his
An extreme contrast of his father, Okonkwo strives to appear as masculine as possible. Even though his traits were already considered very masculine, Okonkwo persistently tries to ensure he is not seen as his definition of weak, more so in the presence of his family then others, in an attempt for his sons to act masculine as well. However, not all agree with his interpretation of manliness, such as his son Nwoye and his friend Obierika, as both did not agree with Okonkwo’s actions when he killed the boy Ikemefuna, who viewed Okonkwo as a father, to not appear weak in front of others. Nevertheless, Okonkwo’s true masculinity is still shown throughout the book, such as when he far...
When you think of the word “culture” what comes to mind? Many elements can contribute to
Okonkwo crumbled under the newly developed society of the white man in Umofia. He could no longer act on his fury, vehemence or impetuousness, because acting in those non-compliant ways got him no further advancement and was frowned upon. Okonkwo lost his mental composure and everything in his life went to pieces because of it. His lack of sensitivity and understanding of those different from him handicapped his entire life. Okonkwo’s strength was further proven to have many fallacies because he was not strong in the important aspects of having composure and not acting on impulse. He could no longer control the people around him, nor his own life so he became misfortune of a classic tragedy.
Set in Africa in the 1890s, Chinua Achebe's ‘Things Fall Apart’ is about the tragedy of Okonkwo during the time Christian missionaries arrived and polluted the culture and traditions of many African tribes. Okonkwo is a self-made man who values culture, tradition, and, above all else, masculinity. Okonkwo’s attachment to the Igbo culture and tradition, and his own extreme emphasis on manliness, is the cause of his fall from grace and eventual death.
“The white man had indeed brought a lunatic religion…” (153) thought Okonkwo in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart. In the novel, the main character Okonkwo and his son Nwoye experience sudden changes in their village from the arrival of white men. They once began their lives in their native Ibo village of Umoufia. After Okonkwo commits a murder by accident, he is forced to be exiled to Mbanta for seven years. During the years of his exile, Okonkwo hears about white men missionaries appearing in Umuofia, who later come to Mbanta. The missionaries have promoted Christianity in both villages and some of the villagers even converted from Ibo culture to Christian. Finally, after the seven years, Okonkwo and Nwoye return to the new Umuofia, where little Ibo culture remains. Okonkwo and Nwoye react to the changed village differently. They have dissimilar perceptions about the influence of the white men because they had distinct life experiences that shaped their own views on life.
Life is a road with infinity paths, among these paths is change. The character Okonkwo in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart was driven by the fear of losing himself in the whirlwind know as change. He needed the village of Umuofia, his home, to remain stuck in time because he measured his own self-worth by the system and the structure of Umuofia. Okonkwo required this order because of the ruined childhood, he had due to his father, their strained relationship, and this was the underlying cause for all his fears and drive for success. When the cultural and political structure of Umuofia changed, as it happens in society. Okonkwo was unable to adapt; the life he desired could not survive the collision with western culture, leading it to collapse.
The book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe definitely has a fitting title. It explains how two cultures with different ideas and beliefs can clash and be intolerant towards one another. Most of the theme is developed through the plot of the story and through a man and his struggle against fear and anger (the main character, Okonkwo). Throughout the book he tries to resolve the problems that develop all around him and within himself. As the story progresses, conflict overwhelms him and leads to his downfall and the downfall of the Ibo culture.
Within every man is a story to be told; one that is evolving day by day and night by night. Each new experience births a fresh reaction that represents a strand of generational DNA. As the chain of events progresses, two things may occur. An individual may follow in path of this genetic pull or dislike it so much that he/she may stray far away from it. In the case of Okonkwo, it was the latter.
At the beginning of the novel Okonkwo was a fairly wealthy and well-respected member of the Igbo society, but it had not always been that way for him. Okonkwo?s father, Unoka, had been a lazy man who would rather play his flute than take care of his crops. Unoka was said to be a charming man, and was able to borrow large amounts of money from his friends, but was never able to pay it back. As a result, Okonkwo has grown up very poor and ashamed of his lazy father. At one point in the book, Okonkwo remembers hearing one of his playmates calling his father an ?agbala,? which was the word for woman, but all described a man who had taken not titles (13). Okonkwo never forgets this, and actually develops a deep-seated fear that people will think that he is weak like his father. As I mentioned, Okonkwo became very well known, and his wealth and prestige rested solely on his own personal achievements. Okonkwo had received no inheritance from his poor father, no land and no money. As a young man, Okonkwo had been very successful wrestler, and as he grew older he became a well-known warrior. He was said to have brought home five human heads, which was a great achievement even for men who were much older that he was. At the beginning of the story, Okonkwo had obtained two titles, and had the respect of every man from all nine villages of Umuofia. Symbols of his wealth and prestige were his family and his compound. As I mentioned earlier, Okonwo had received no inheritance, and at the time of this story Okonkwo is still fairly young, and the fact that he had three wives, several children, and a very productive piece of land showed that Okonkwo was a very diligent worker. ?Okonkwo ruled his household with a heavy hand. His wives, especially...
Okonkwo is “a man of action, a man of war” (7) and a member of high status in the Igbo village. He holds the prominent position of village clansman due to the fact that he had “shown incredible prowess in two intertribal wars” (5). Okonkwo’s hard work had made him a “wealthy farmer” (5) and a recognized individual amongst the nine villages of Umuofia and beyond. Okonkwo’s tragic flaw isn’t that he was afraid of work, but rather his fear of weakness and failure which stems from his father’s, Unoka, unproductive life and disgraceful death. “Perhaps down in his heart Okonkwo was not a cruel man. But his whole life was dominated by fear, the fear of failure and weakness….It was not external but lay deep within himself. It was the fear of himself, lest he should be found to resemble his father.” Okonkwo’s father was a lazy, carefree man whom had a reputation of being “poor and his wife and children had just barely enough to eat... they swore never to lend him any more money because he never paid back.” (5) Unoka had never taught Okonkwo what was right and wrong, and as a result Okonkwo had to interpret how to be a “good man”. Okonkwo’s self-interpretation leads him to conclude that a “good man” was someone who was the exact opposite of his father and therefore anything that his father did was weak and unnecessary.
Okonkwo’s fear of unmanliness is kindled by his father, who was a lazy, unaccomplished man. Okonkwo strives to have a high status from a young age and eventually achieves it. He has a large family, many yams and is well known throughout the village for his valor. He raises his family by his mentality of manliness and is ...