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Things Fall Apart and the Second Coming

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Things Fall Apart and the Second Coming

Jennifer Moua November 10, 2011 Period 2 Things Break Down and the Second Coming Chinua Achebe based his story, “Things Break Down,” on the poem by William Butler Yeats called “The Second Coming.” These two pieces of literature have many similarities in spite of being 2 completely different pieces of literature. It is clearly revealed that both authors wished to show great modification between an old period to a brand-new period with the modifications taking place. Achebe begins his book with an excerpt to the start of the poem: “Turning and turning in the expanding vortex The falcon can not hear the falconer;

Things break down; the centre can not hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world” (Yeats, lines 1-4). Although Achebe begins with this excerpt, the expression “things fall apart; the centre can not hold” (Achebe, 3) is in direct correlation to Yeat’s poem of drastic modification. Achebe describes the situation of the Igbo culture through these lines of the poem in which Yeats explains his own condition of the world. In the quote “things break down”, it is referenced by Achebe to foreshadow events that are to happen in the book in which leads the protagonist Okonkwo to his biggest downfall in addition to his death.

Furthermore, he means the turmoil that occurs when a system collapses to the new modifications that occur upon the Igbo culture. In Mbanta and Umuofia children played an even bigger function as they were the future and centre for that reason, as “things [fell] apart”, “the centre can not hold” together. The clans depended upon the boys to continue their methods as they got older and stronger. Once the more youthful people started to transform, it paved the way for others to join and for the church to get more powerful. The falcon can not hear the falconer” (Yeats, line 2). The quote represents the growing space in between the young generation and the old, standard generations. Achebe includes a similar analysis of the quote as he explains the situation of the younger members of Mbanta village that revealed interest in Christianity and were the very first to convert. The youth did not have the very same level of appreciation for tradition as their elders and as a result were more accepting to the new idea.

As the more youthful members of the tribe were converting, they were ending up being wary of the Igbo culture in spite of protests and resistance from the seniors. The falcon refers to as the young members and the falconer as the seniors in which connects both the unique and the poem together. Moreover, in the novel, Achebe tips, “the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity” (Yeats, lines 7-8) this likewise displays the weariness and approval of the new religious beliefs.

The best, people members that held titles, were looming the concept of Christianity while the worst, the outcasts and cursed, were devoted and enthusiastic. The more the church acquired conversions from the Igbo culture, the stronger it grew day by day. Yeats refers to the very best as the great while the worst are the zealots that will increase. In conclusion, the poem and unique, though set in completely various locations at different times, are the very same story.

The plot lines separate and return together however they share the same basic concepts and similar impacts on the reader. “Things Break Down” by Chinua Achebe puts the metaphors and images from “The 2nd Coming” by William Butler Yeats into action. [Word Count: 566] Works Cited Achebe, Chinua. Things Fall Apart. New York: Doubleday, 1994. Print. Yeats, William B. The 2nd Coming. PotW. org– Poem of the Week. Web. 10 Nov. 2011. <
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