How are the Ibo people more civilized than the white people who arrive?

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slcollins | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

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Most reader of Things Fall Apart would agree that the Ibo people are more civilized that the white missionaries who arrive in their village. Throughout the whole novel, Achebe shows the Ibo people to be rooted in tradition and respectful of honor and order. This is shown through the Week of Peace, New Yam Festival and even in their reverence of the egwugwu. They respect each other and the gods they worship. This tradition is at the root of who they are as a people and a culture. When the white missionaries arrive, they show absolutely no respect for the tradition the Ibo people have created. They systematically dismantle their society and label them as savages. This is why many readers would say that the Ibo are more civilized than the white missionaries.


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