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Things Fall Apart: The Cultural Tradition of Umuofia

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Things Fall Apart

By: hulseb Things Fall Apart: An Examination In “Things Break Down,” Chinua Achebe informs two different stories at the very same time. One is of Okonkwo, the villager whose increase to power is stopped due to the fact that of all of his miseries. The other is of Okonkwo’s village, Umuofia, and its battle to hang on to its cultural tradition while facing manifest destiny from the West. The title, “Things Fall Apart,” explains perfectly what occurs to both Okonkwo and his village. Okonkwo’s life falls apart and as an outcome, he commits suicide by hanging himself.

The cultural tradition of Umuofia breaks down, and becomes influenced by the West. In “Things Fall Apart,” Achebe utilizes Okonkwo and the village’s falling out to show how African culture, in addition to other cultures all over the world, suffered as a result of Westernization. In the book, Achebe focuses mainly on the character of Okonkwo. Okonkwo’s story follows the general pattern of a Greek catastrophe. He experiences many successes in the start, however everything eventually comes crashing down on him. His early life is the typical success story.

He starts poor, but works hard to make everyone’s respect. From the beginning he is revolted with his father. He is a lazy old guy who obtains cash and never pays it back. Okonkwo realizes that he does not want to be like his dad, and it is this hatred that drives him to strive. After his father’s death, Okonkwo pays off his financial obligations, and begins his long journey to the top of the clan. In a short time, Okonkwo’s hard work settles and he turns into one of the village’s most respected members. He earns 3 out of the four town titles.

He is recognized as the best warrior in Umuofia. He takes three spouses and has numerous kids. He is almost to the top of the clan when his journey to achievement begins to fall apart. Since of a scuffle with one of the close-by villages, Okonkwo is given a boy to look after. The boy, Ikemefuna, shows lots of resemblances to Okonkwo and they become very close. He sees Okonkwo as a daddy figure, and even calls him “father.” Okonkwo even puts him before his true kid, Nwoye. But one day the village seniors decide that he has actually gotten too close which he requires to be killed.

Okonkwo ultimately deals the final blow that kills Ikemefuna, to reveal that he is not weak. The sorrow that follows starts Okonkwo on his failure. The next major occasion that caused Okonkwo’s failure took place at the funeral of one of the senior citizens in the clan. When the group of men fired their weapons to offer the male his last salute, Okonkwo’s gun took off and a piece of iron went into a young kid’s heart, eliminating him. Despite the fact that the death was unintentional, Okonkwo was forced to get away from the clan. He had dedicated a crime versus the earth goddess, and would have to leave the village for 7 years.

Okonkwo and his family got away to his mom’s land. Okonkwo had actually lost whatever he had worked so hard for, and could not work to get it back for seven years. While in his exile, missionaries pertained to his motherland. These white men considerably disturbed Okonkwo. He specifically became angry when he heard that his earliest boy, Nwoye, was among the converts to the brand-new faith. His animosity for the missionaries grew, and he was horrified when he went back to Umuofia after his seven-year exile. He ended up being extremely distressed when the guys of Umuofia decided not to go to war with the white males.

When five court messengers pertained to stop a conference in the town, Okonkwo finally released all of his anger. He beheaded the head messenger and therefore completed his downfall. Okonkwo’s life lastly fell completely apart as his body was found dangling from a tree. The village of Umuofia fell apart in another way. When the white missionaries showed up, the villagers did not take them very seriously. They refused to see the missionaries as a hazard and this resulted in their death. However, because of the strength of the west, the village’s breaking down might have been unavoidable.

Really few civilizations, if any, were able to stand up to the threat of Westernization. It was a force that was too powerful and sophisticated for such typical individuals to fight. Achebe’s book demonstrates how Westernization caused the demise of numerous ancient cultures. The reason this book offered numerous copies, I think, is since it can be applied not just to Africa, but to all of the other cultures worldwide that were messed up by Westernization. In “Things Break Down,” Achebe not only describes the life and death of one male, however also the life and death of the world’s various cultures, as a result of Westernization. Word Count: 809

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