Tradition dictates their role in life.
For further information on his life and works, see CLC Volumes 1, 3, 5, 7, 11, 26, and Things Fall Apart is one of the most widely read and studied African novels ever written.
Achebe does not paint an idyllic picture of pre-colonial Africa, but instead shows Igbo society with all its flaws as well as virtues. The novel focuses on Okonkwo, an ambitious and inflexible clan member trying to overcome the legacy of his weak father.
He is a great wrestler, a brave warrior, and a respected member of the clan who endeavors to uphold its traditions and customs.
He lives for the veneration of his ancestors and their ways. In the second part he is finally exiled when he shoots at his wife and accidentally hits a clansman. Okonkwo is anxious to return to Umuofia, but finds upon his return—the third part of the novel—that life has also begun to change there as well.
The Christian missionaries have made inroads into the culture of the clan through its disenfranchised members. Okonkwo eventually stands up to the missionaries in an attempt to protect his culture, but when he kills a British messenger, Okonkwo realizes that he stands alone, and kills himself.
Ironically, suicide is considered the ultimate disgrace by the clan, and his people are unable to bury him. Major Themes The main theme of Things Fall Apart focuses on the clash between traditional Igbo society and the culture and religion of the colonists. Achebe wrote the novel in English but incorporated into the prose a rhythm that conveyed a sense of African oral storytelling.
He also used traditional African images including the harmattan an African dust-laden wind and palm oil, as well as Igbo proverbs. For instance, in Christianity, locusts are a symbol of destruction and ruin, but the Umuofians rejoice at their coming because they are a source of food.
The arrival of the locusts comes directly before the arrival of the missionaries in the novel. Transition is another major theme of the novel and is expressed through the changing nature of Igbo society.
Several references are made throughout the narrative to faded traditions in the clan, emphasizing the changing nature of its laws and customs. Other themes include duality, the nature of religious belief, and individualism versus community.
Much of the critical discussion about Things Fall Apart concentrates on the socio-political aspects of the novel, including the friction between the members of Igbo society as they are confronted with the intrusive and overpowering presence of Western government and beliefs.
Many critics have argued that Okonkwo was wrong and went against the clan when he became involved in killing the boy. Other reviewers have asserted that he was merely fulfilling the command of the Oracle of the Hills and Caves.
Several reviewers have also noted his use of African images and proverbs to convey African culture and oral storytelling.Things Fall Apart is a novel written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe. Published in , its story chronicles pre-colonial life in the south-eastern part of Nigeria and the arrival of the Europeans during the late nineteenth century.
Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. Home / Literature / Things Fall Apart / Analysis ; As you might guess from the title, Things Fall Apart is a tragedy. It tells the story of an African clan being invaded by outsiders and falling to pieces.
The novel also tells the story of Okonkwo. In this lesson, we will examine the novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. After a brief summary of the novel's important events, we will analyze its main themes. Things Fall Apart is the first of three novels in Chinua Achebe's critically acclaimed African Trilogy.
It is a classic narrative about Africa's cataclysmic encounter with Europe as it /5(K). Things Fall Apart is about the tragic fall of the protagonist, Okonkwo, and the Igbo culture.
Okonkwo is a respected and influential leader within the Igbo community of Umuofia in eastern Nigeria. Okonkwo is a respected and influential leader within the Igbo community of Umuofia in eastern Nigeria. Things Fall Apart, published in , is Nigerian novelist Chinua Achebe’s first novel.
Simultaneously portraying the traditions and beliefs of Nigerian Ibo culture and engaging with the narrative of European colonialism in Africa, Things Fall Apart uses one man’s story to speak for many.