Gender Roles In Things Fall Apart

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If you are a woman, you would not want to live in Igbo society. In the book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, he describes a society where men have more power than women. The main character, Okonkwo, has many conflicts regarding his masculinity. He tries to be an excessively masculine figure in a society that has more of a balance between masculinity and femininity. Achebe promotes many stereotypes about masculine and feminine traits in his novel. Okonkwo is a hyper-masculine character who shows distaste and aggression to those with feminine traits. Even though Igbo society seems sexist to our western civilization, Achebe implies that both genders have an equal amount of purpose and Okonkwo is an outlier because of his hyper-masculine traits. …show more content…
Men take charge of harvesting yams since they call yams, “the king of crops” and “a man’s crop” (Achebe, 23). Men also provide for their family and their roles generally require more physical work. Women in the Igbo society grow “women’s crops, like coco-yams, beans and cassava.” (Achebe, 22-23). Women also have to clean and cook to serve as respectful wives for their husband, and also bear him children. Women here have equal purpose in the work they do, but Achebe makes it clear it still is a world ruled by men. This is very different to common western opinions on gender roles today, which are much more

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