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Where is there a clash between generations in "Marriage Is a Private Affair?"

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amanbisht5 | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted June 23, 2012 at 12:11 PM via web

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Where is there a clash between generations in "Marriage Is a Private Affair?"

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 23, 2012 at 1:17 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that the most evident clash between generations would have to reside between Nnaemeka and Okeke.  The clash between father and son relating to the son's marriage to Nene is where there is a generational conflict evident in the story.  The father, a traditional man of the Ibo tribe, believes that marriage is a public matter, to be decided by the elders of the village, or at the very least, the father.  Nnaemeka believes marriage to be a private issue, one that should be decided on the basis of love and within the hearts of the two who will be married.  In both of these is a fundamental conflict or clash between generations in that the elder generation sees things in one way while the younger generation views it differently.  This is where the basis of the conflict of the story resides.  Okeke's anger at the difference in perception of the issue is what causes him to not speak to his son, and remain ignorant of his grandsons.  This stance withers at the end, when the reality that hits Okeke, and to an extent, the reader, is that sadness and a sense of fear is universal, something that cuts across to all, regarding all.

 

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