Literary essay on things fall apart

Literary Analysis Of Things Fall Apart Themes
  1. How to write a literature essay: Things Fall Apart |
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  5. Things Fall Apart: Chinua Achebe and the languages of African literature

Sources and citation are provided. Essays on Things Fall Apart. It was first published in The story centers around Okonkwo, an Igbo man who is determined to improve his social status within his community. Because his father was seen as lazy and irresponsible.

How to write a literature essay: Things Fall Apart |

Through hard work, he rose to a high position in Umuofia, his village. When one of the neighboring clans offends him, they give him a young virgin and boy in exchange for peace. Fearing being labeled as weak, Okonkwo participates in the killing of the boy from the neighboring clan put under his care. Things start to take a sour turn for Okonkwo. This novel is different from most western novels making it difficult for students to write essays on Things Fall Apart.

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There are sample papers that give an outline, introduction, and conclusion of the book. Students can use these samples to help them writing the Things Fall Apart essay.

Some may say that the book is about the differences in beliefs between the Africans and the colonizers, but it is more than that. One of these is his reliance in the strength of anger. Although he felt strongly in the beliefs and customs of the Ibo people, there are several occasions in which Okonkwo made a decision to disobey the customs in order to live out his own personal beliefs. For example, in chapter four, Okonkwo is yelled at by Ezeani, the priest of the earth goddess, for beating his wife during the sacred week of peace.

Things Fall Apart, Part 2: Crash Course Literature 209

Okonkwo did not feel remorse for his actions and probably thought of it as a sign of strength and manhood. Okonkwo was always worried about being seen as weak. One good example of this is when he kills Ikemefuna. Okonkwo liked the boy because he saw several good qualities in him that he wished his own son possessed. He had to be killed because of one of their customs. When it came time to kill Ikemefuna, Okonkwo delivered the second and final blow from his machete and killed the boy so that people would not think that he was weak.

After Ikemefuna was killed, Okonkwo was unable to eat or drink for days because he was upset. This same event is also a major breakdown for Okonkwo. Killing Ikemefuna represents killing off everything in which Okonkwo believed very strongly in. He saw many of his own qualities in Ikemefuna.

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He could have done a lot of good for the clan and Okonkwo was very proud of him but, he ends up killing Ikemefuna himself. Just as Okonkwo was gaining power and higher positions within the clan, he was banished for seven years for accidentally killing another member of the clan. They burned all his huts down and he and he and his family had to live in his motherland. Even though everyone knew that he was innocent and that the banishment was meant for murder, no one was willing to challenge the tradition.

The fact that the Ibo people relied on tradition and would not accept change was a weak point in their society. As Okonkwo was preparing to return to Umuofia from his time is exile, he was expecting the people to be exited for his return. He thought they would be happy to have their warrior leader back home.

Things fall apart essay

Their reaction was not what he expected. He believed that the people had grown weak. The missionaries had also arrived in Umuofia. Okonkwo was not scared of them at first. He did not think that anyone would believe what they had to say. The arrival of the missionaries is the issue in the book in which there is the biggest clash of beliefs. When the Christian religion was introduced, many members of the clan who were not happy with the Ibo religion became interested.


Some of the title-less men were also interested. Nwoye, who did not approve of leaving the supposedly evil twin babies in the woods or the killing of Ikemefuna, was also interested in Christianity because it taught that killing innocent people was wrong. When Okonkwo heard that Nwoye was visiting with the missionaries, he was infuriated and he kicked him out of the house. In general, Okonkwo was fearful and extremely resistant to the new religion because it had the potential of ruining the life long work of the clan of trying to please the gods of its ancestors.

Just as we can see a difference in personal beliefs within the clan, we can also see the difference in customs or methods or motives between the two missionaries. Brown was a very passive and understanding man, whereas, Mr. Smith was more forceful and condemning of the people. He did not try to understand the customs of the clan, he simply told them that they were wrong and Christianity was right. Things really got heated up when a convert unmasked and killed an egwugwu.

In revenge, the church was burnt down. Okonkwo and other members of the clan were brought before the commissioner and were harassed and beaten. It was after this that a town meeting was called. Okonkwo was infuriated and determined to fight the white men. When a messenger came to break up the meeting, Okonkwo was so enraged that he killed the man.

In the end, Okonkwo committed suicide by hanging himself. He knew that the people would not fight and he was ashamed of what the Ibo society had become. He knew because they had let the other messenger escape. Everything he lived for and believed in was going to be taken away by the white men. He did not want to see that happen so he took his own life.

Yet, this is ironic because, in doing so, he was committing an act which was considered one of the worst actions a member could do in the Ibo society. Beliefs, both personal and those of the society someone is born into, play a major role in their life. This story is an example of what happens when those beliefs are taken away and others are forced upon a person. Everyone needs to believe in something, and things fall apart when they no longer can. 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.

One part of the Its says that Okonkwo is widely known and well respected. Okonkwo was known as a wealthy farmer, and worked on his own, without the help of his father.

Things Fall Apart: Chinua Achebe and the languages of African literature

Okonkwo had three wives, and was a strong, manly warrior. This has a great effect on the The most notable one is the Okonkwo has with his father Unoku. Their relationship is a very strained in which Okonkwo grows up hating his father and consciously adopts opposite ideals. Unoku is often viewed as a poor, lazy man who never planned for the future. He is always in debt and as a result he left his son with nothing to live on when he dies. Two ways that shows Okonkwo's hate towards his father is the way he constantly beats his own When a hammer meets a selection of fine china, the fine china breaks and shatters.

This may sound utterly fruitless; however, the Play-Doh is still recognizable as Play-Do, while the china exists as a collection of glass.