Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart Essay

1115 Words Jan 15th, 2016 null Page
There is an Igbo proverb that goes, “When a man says yes, his chi also says yes” (Achebe 27). Things Fall Apart,by Chinua Achebe, is a story set in the Igbo society of Nigeria about a man who struggles with his chi and trying to change his fate. In the Igbo society, chi is seen as a personal god, almost like karma, that helps a person make the right decisions and keeps them safe if they deserve it. Chi plays a crucial role in understanding the deeper meaning of the events in Things Fall Apart, helps to illustrate parts of the Igbo society, and to show how the Igbo society is similar to western societies. In Things Fall Apart the main character, Okonkwo, has problematic chi, and it shows throughout the novel. It is illustrated when Ikemefuna is introduced into his life, but he later has to kill him. It is emphasized when he gets exiled for seven years, for an offense of female murder. His chi is not only moot, but also contradicts his own beliefs at points. “The saying of the elders was not true, that if a man said yea his chi also affirmed. Here was a man whose chi says nay despite his own affirmation” (Achebe, 131). This quote demonstrates Okonkwo’s moot chi. Without the use of a notion such as chi, the whole book would not make sense, because everything would be attributed to bad luck. This belief was not present in the Igbo society, so if Chinua Achebe had not included the concept of chi throughout the book, it would not have made as much sense and would have…

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