How does Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart serve as an instrument of the suffering of the people, and how does the suffering Okonkwo brings upon others contribute to the tragic vision of the book?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Okonkwo serves as an instrument of suffering for his family, tribal members, and himself in Achebe's classic novel Things Fall Apart. Okonkwo's propensity for violence and intolerance negatively affect his relationship with members of his family and his fellow villagers. Okonkwo is forced to make sacrifices to the god Ani after beating his wife during the Week of Peace, which not only harms his wife but also upsets the village elders and disrupts the traditional Igbo ritual. Okonkwo also disobeys the Oracle by killing Ikemefuna himself, which ruins his relationship with Nwoye , who finds solace in the Christian church. Okonkwo also accidentally kills a young man during Ezeudu's funeral, which results in his seven-year exile. Okonkwo's actions not only take the life...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 388 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team