How does Okonkwo's relationship with his daughter Ezinma compare to his relationship with Nwoye?

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In Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo clearly demonstrates favoritism toward Ezinma compared to his strained relationship with his oldest son Nwoye . He feels that Ezinma is one of the few people who understand him, and his attitude toward his daughter contrasts greatly with the way that...

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In Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo clearly demonstrates favoritism toward Ezinma compared to his strained relationship with his oldest son Nwoye. He feels that Ezinma is one of the few people who understand him, and his attitude toward his daughter contrasts greatly with the way that he attempts to impart his brutal masculine values upon Nwoye.

His bond with Ezinma is strengthened during his time in exile in Mbanta. He views her as the favorite among his children:

“Okonkwo was very luck in his daughters. He never stopped regretting that Ezinma was a girl. Of all his children she alone understood his every mood. A bond of sympathy had grown between them as the years had passed” (172).

Okonkwo wishes that Ezinma was born a boy because she exhibits many of the traits that he wishes Nwoye had.

Nwoye, on the other hand, experiences the majority of his father’s abusive behaviors. Okonkwo sees Nwoye as weak, much like his own ill-fated father Unoka, and he aspires to beat these qualities out of him. Okonkwo pushes Nwoye too far, however, and the young man becomes affiliated with the Christian church. When he joins the church, Nwoye rebukes his relationship with his father:

“Mr. Kiaga’s joy was very great. ‘Blessed is he who forsakes his father and his mother for my sake,’ he intoned. ‘Those that hear my words are my father and my mother.’ Nwoye did not fully understand. But he was happy to leave his father” (153).

Thus, Okonkwo’s bond with Ezinma is entirely different from his toxic relationship with Nwoye.

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