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What is the purpose of storytelling in Things Fall Apart? Specifically, what are the...

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lafrohnaple | Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted March 12, 2008 at 6:05 AM via web

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What is the purpose of storytelling in Things Fall Apart? Specifically, what are the purposes of the following stories: Vulture and Sky (ch. 7), Mosquito and Ear (ch. 9), The Snake-lizard and his Mother (ch. 9), Tortoise and the Birds (ch 11)? Are the stories meant to simply showcase Nigerian culture or do they have important metaphorical purposes?

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alexb2 | eNotes Employee

Posted March 12, 2008 at 10:20 AM (Answer #2)

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I think it's both, they are interesting to read because they give the reader insight into Nigerian culture and history, but they also have allegorical meaning that helps inform the story and teach the reader something.

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teach1052 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted August 14, 2008 at 10:22 AM (Answer #3)

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I believe all the stories within Things Fall Apart are told with multiple purposes.  They teach history of the culture, they teach reasoning as to why certain customs and traditions are followed, and they serve as an education for the members of the culture.As an education, they are learning about the values of their ancestors that have carried them forward to this moment and will serve to carry them into te future if they are heeded.  Honor, family roles, foolish behavior and its consequences, how to deal with trickery, are all present.

 We in the western cultures would probably liken them to parables or fables.  These are present in every culture to preform the same tasks and teach us the same lessons.

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porashuna | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted January 13, 2011 at 6:34 AM (Answer #4)

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it may be a characteristic of oral tradition

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fashionableb1 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted June 14, 2014 at 4:34 AM (Answer #5)

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The purpose of story-telling in Things Fall Apart is to teach lessons, pass down a piece of history, traditions, and customs. Those stories in the western world are known as fables

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