Things Fall Apart

Improved Essays
How can an author use a fictional character to make a cultural statement? Chinua Achebe in his novel Things Fall Apart answers this question by telling a story of British colonization through an African point of view. In this work of historical fiction, Okonkwo wants the people of Umuofia to fight against the British, but instead many of the people of Umuofia follow the new ideas the British bring such as Christianity. Then Okonkwo loses hope that his people, so then Okonkwo commits suicide by hanging himself from a tree. Achebe illustrates that encountering a new religion can be difficult even though the initial change may be good.
Before the British came to the nine villages of Umuofia, Okonkwo is seen as a successful man. Although some
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According to the text, “He mourned for the clan, which he saw breaking apart, and he mourned for the warlike men of Umuofia, who had so unaccountably become soft like women.”(Achebe 183). Okonkwo had just returned to Umuofia, only to see so much change in his native land everyone’s attention was on the new religion, trading stores, and government the missionaries brought. Okonkwo believes his men should fight against the missionaries and drive them away from Umuofia. In the text Okonkwo says his mother’s clansmen, “If a man comes into my hut and defecates on the floor, what do I do? Do I shut my eyes? No! I take a stick and break his head. This is what a man does.”(Achebe 158). Okonkwo, rulers, and elders of Mbanta discussed on what kind of action they should take towards the missionaries who had built a church, introduced their religion and brought a government to …show more content…
After Okonkwo kills at white messenger during a meeting at the marketplace he knew Umuofia would not go to war because they let the other 4 messengers escape. Later the district commissioner set out to look for Okonkwo in his compound only to find a group of men in his obi including obierika. They all set out to find him, “Then they came to the tree from which Okonkwo’s body was dangling.” (Achebe 207). Okonkwo was found dead hanging from a tree behind his compound. The coming of white men to Umuofia and the influence they had on the people of Umuofia is what drove Okonkwo to kill himself, he disliked the changes the white men brought to his fatherland even his own son began to follow their religion of christianity. “That man was of the greatest men in Umuofia. You drove him to kill himself; and now he will be buried like a dog.”(Achebe 208). With great fury Obierika claimed to the District commissioner. Okonkwo was opposed to the change the white men brought, he then lost hope and chose to end his

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