Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart Essay example

1092 Words Nov 25th, 2015 5 Pages
Many a missionary has come to colonize Africa, thinking that they are "civilizing" a more "primitive" race. However, these missionaries often do not realize that who they think are "savages" may be better off without what they have to offer. These Europeans have in their minds what is called a single story of Africa, a shuddering misconception of another’s life, only a small fragment of their entire story. This "single story" is only a part of Africa 's more diverse and sophisticated culture, as many know only of the savage tales told of Africa and not of its refined societies. Such is the story of Umuofia in the book by Chinua Achebe. In his book Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe successfully eradicates the single story of Africa through the examples of dignified Ibo conversation, Ibo government, and the friendship between the villager Akunna and the white man Mr. Brown, showing that Africans are just as human as anyone else.

The novel is able to erase Africa 's single story through Achebe 's imagery of conversation which the Ibo hold in such high regard. Okonkwo is at his friend Obierika 's obi, and the family of Obierika 's daughter 's suitor have come to arrange a bride-price. "As the men drank, they talked about everything except the thing for which they had gathered" (Achebe 52). Achebe specifically uses the word "everything" to symbolize the broad subjects the men talked about, yet none of them had brought up what they had originally met to discuss. It…

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