How much of Okonkwo's tragedy stems from his failure to heed advice from others?

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kapokkid eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the end, Okonkwo's failure is likely more a result of pride and intransigence, but he certainly tends to ignore advice from people around him and it does not help his cause. 

One of the early incidents that demonstrates this well is the killing of Ikemefuna. The boy has come to be a welcome member of the household, particularly close to Nwoye but he also considers Okonkwo to be his father. When Ogbuefi tells Okonkwo not to take a hand in his killing, Okonkwo ignores the advice and administers the fatal blow. This sends Okonkwo into a deep depression for days and ruins his relationship with Nwoye for good.

In the end, after Okonkwo has returned and seen the massive changes that have taken place, Obierika (his most trusted friend) suggests that he can be accommodating. He tries to help Okonkwo see that some adaptation is not effeminate or weak. Of course Okonkwo rejects this advice as well and ends up being arrested and eventually killing himself.

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Things Fall Apart

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