Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe Essay

Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe Essay

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Post colonialism deals with cultural identity in colonized societies and the ways in which writers articulate that identity. Things Fall Apart is a good novel that serves as a reminder of what Nigeria once was. It shows how a society can deal with change, how change affects the individuals of that society, and how delicate a change can be; so much so that the people themselves are surprised at the change.

Things Fall Apart is an English novel by the Nigerian author Chinua Achebe which was published in 1957. Throughout the book the role of customs and traditions is very important and decides the fate of men, women, and children. Some of the customs practiced in this culture would certainly be frowned upon in the West yet are perfectly acceptable. It talks of the Ibo society. The protagonist of the novel is Okonkwo. He is a respected and influential leader within the Igbo community of Umuofia in eastern Nigeria. He first earns personal fame and distinction, and brings honor to his village, when he defeats Amalinze the Cat in a wrestling contest. The first part of the book deals with the proof of tribal life in Africa and the rise in power and authority of Okonkwo. The author highlights his strengths as well as his obsession with success. Okonkwo does not show any love in dealing with his three wives and children. This part reveals that Okonkwo actions are often irrational and imprudent, which will be the cause of his eventual fall. We learn about the traditions, superstitions and religious faiths of the villagers.

The second part begins with Okonkwo exile to his mother’s land for seven years. This part also marks the entry of the white man into the lives of the African people. Though inwardly disappointed, Okonkwo begins a ne...


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...Apart. London: Heinemann Press, 1958.

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Chua, John, and Suzanne Pavlos. Cliffs Notes on Things Fall Apart. 18 Jan 2014

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George, Olakunle. Relocating Agency: modernity and African letters. Albany: SU of New
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Mbembe, Achille. On the Post colony. Berkeley: U of California P, 2001. Print.

Ogede, Ode. Achebe’s Things Fall Apart: A reader’s Guide. New York: Continuum, 2007.
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Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe Essay

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