Things Fall Apart Questions and Answers

Things Fall Apart

Published in 1958, Things Fall Apart is a novel by Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe. It details life in southeast Nigeria prior to and in the aftermath of the arrival of white European colonists in...

Latest answer posted March 11, 2020, 1:12 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Unoka and his son Okonkwo appear to be polar opposites. Unoka was an ineffectual, dreamy man who achieved little. He loved music and drinking, was poor and lazy, took no titles, and died heavily in...

Latest answer posted November 19, 2019, 11:30 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo: Okonkwo is an ambitious, tenacious, and flamboyant man. He revels in brute strength and is focused on projecting an image of male virility. Okonkwo is most afraid of mediocrity and...

Latest answer posted March 15, 2018, 6:41 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The novel's protagonist, Okonkwo, epitomizes what we would now call toxic masculinity. As he has antiquated ideas when it comes to gender roles, Okonkwo firmly believes that men should be powerful,...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2020, 11:36 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The story of the tortoise is a fable, one of two traditional Nigerian stories presented by Achebe in the novel (the other being the story of the mosquito). On the surface, it fulfills a standard...

Latest answer posted August 12, 2009, 12:26 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The lessons of Things Fall Apart are not generally uplifting or optimistic. It is, after all, a book about the degeneration and destruction of a society. One of its grimmest lessons is that force,...

Latest answer posted May 10, 2020, 8:31 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The egwugwu are masked dancers that represent the nine ancestral spirits of Umuofia. These masked ancestral spirits are enigmatic in nature and comprise of nine revered village elders, who...

Latest answer posted February 22, 2019, 4:56 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Umuofia, the Oracle of the Hills and the Caves is also revered for her clairvoyance or supernatural insight into the future. She is a kind of prophet, foretelling what Umuofia's future will...

Latest answer posted October 21, 2016, 4:13 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The story of Things Fall Apart comes closer to Aristotle's definition of tragedy than most of the extant Greek tragedies do. In many ways, Okonkwo resembles Oedipus, a great man, respected by those...

Latest answer posted April 29, 2021, 1:14 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In chapter 7, Okonkwo receives the bad news that Ikemefuna will be sacrificed, according to the will of Agbala. He is also warned by Ogbuefi Ezeudu to not have a hand in Ikemefuna's death, because...

Latest answer posted October 21, 2019, 10:29 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Things Fall Part, father-son relationships play a significant part in the narrative. The first chapter discusses the ways in which Okonkwo’s entire persona is shaped as a response to his father,...

Latest answer posted March 26, 2016, 3:42 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In chapter thirteen, a funeral ceremony is held for a prominent warrior, Ogbuefi Ezeudu, and everyone in the clan gathers to participate in the ceremony. During the funeral ceremony, the men beat...

Latest answer posted February 14, 2019, 4:24 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The central aspect of Okonkwo's character that is accentuated throughout the novel is his pride. There are numerous examples that illustrate his sense of self and his ambition, even arrogance, such...

Latest answer posted May 2, 2021, 9:33 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The yam is a central feature of the Igbo creation myth. The god Chukwu gives one to the first human family he creates and supplies them with seeds to grow more to feed themselves. As the world at...

Latest answer posted September 3, 2018, 4:54 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

When analyzing wrestling in the novel, we can look at two distinct questions. How does Things Fall Apart use wrestling as a means of exposition (to establish character)? And what significance does...

Latest answer posted May 17, 2015, 3:02 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

This quote comes in chapter 1. Okoye has come to collect his debt of two hundred cowries from his friend, Unoka. As he tells Unoka the purpose for his visit, Unoka begins to laugh. "Look at that...

Latest answer posted January 14, 2010, 7:06 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, the District Commissioner is the reigning symbol of Western imperialism, an ignorant, condescending administrator who is brought to the area to mete out...

Latest answer posted March 10, 2015, 3:27 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo's youngest wife Ojiugo decides to have her hair braided during the Week of Peace. She decides to have her hair braided instead of cooking dinner. Okonkwo is furious...

Latest answer posted May 26, 2012, 5:02 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Ekwefi was the village beauty. She left her husband to become the wife of Okonkwo. No doubt, this boosted Oknokwo's ego. He won Ekwefi's heart when he wrestled Amalinze the Cat and won the...

Latest answer posted August 16, 2011, 7:17 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Throughout Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart, the generational conflict between father and son is frequently significant. From a young age, Okonkwo rejects his lazy father, Unoka, vowing to be as...

Latest answer posted April 9, 2018, 8:28 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo's exile is ironic in that Okonkwo leaves and everything in his village changes. While Okonkwo is away, the white man comes in and begins converting more men from Umuofia to Christianity. It...

Latest answer posted July 16, 2011, 11:40 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

After following Okonkwo's staunch perspective throughout the entirety of the tale, Chinua Achebe's classic debut novel Things Fall Apart provocatively ends by narrowing in on the white District...

Latest answer posted July 1, 2016, 6:59 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

One could argue that Okonkwo doesn't really change all that much over the course of Things Fall Apart, and therein lies the problem. The society around Okonkwo is changing rapidly on account of...

Latest answer posted October 11, 2020, 12:40 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The egwugwu are the masked ancestral spirits of Umuofia, who are comprised of the clan's most revered men. The nine masked egwugwu act as the village judges and preside over disputes throughout the...

Latest answer posted October 8, 2017, 2:58 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo doesn't truly change during the novel. He is rigid in his ways and unaccepting of new ways of life in his village with the introduction of imperialism. As others in the village drift toward...

Latest answer posted November 10, 2018, 4:24 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

This quote from Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart comes at the end of chapter 17 as the warrior Okonkwo reflects on his son Nwoye. The quote represents Okonkwo's thoughts on his son, with the fire...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2016, 11:12 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Achebe foreshadows Ikemefuna's fate in the first two chapters of the novel through specific language. At the end of chapter 1, Ikemefuna is immediately introduced as a "doomed lad who was...

Latest answer posted March 29, 2019, 1:46 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

A denouement is the final outcome of a story which generally occurs after the climax. Unresolved events and missing pieces of the story are clarified in the denouement. In the novel Things Fall...

Latest answer posted April 28, 2016, 2:00 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo is a good father in that he is an extremely hard-working man that is able to financially provide for his family. He is a respected member of the community, and he embraces his leadership...

Latest answer posted August 19, 2019, 12:38 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart centers on the strong traditional warrior Okonkwo as he adjusts to an evolving Umuofian landscape. Though Okonkwo is a man of relatively few words, the novel...

Latest answer posted September 12, 2016, 4:54 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo's father, Unoka, was a debtor and alcoholic, who spent the majority of his days playing his flute, borrowing money, and drinking palm wine. Unoka was not respected by his community members,...

Latest answer posted April 2, 2019, 9:53 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

I agree with other editors in suggesting that Okonkwo's death is symbolic both externally and internally, if I can use these distinctions. Firstly, it represents the death of his own high standards...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2011, 2:53 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Mr. Brown and Mr. Smith are apparently similar in their backgrounds and beliefs, as well as their common English names, though their methods of spreading the faith are quite different. Mr. Brown is...

Latest answer posted December 19, 2019, 7:35 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The conflict at the heart of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart is culture clash. There are different types of conflict in literature: sometimes it is a conflict between two parties; other times, it...

Latest answer posted July 28, 2019, 3:31 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The obvious answer to this question is that the arrival of Christian missionaries instigates "things falling apart" in Umuofia. Indeed, the Christians change the culture of the village and...

Latest answer posted February 3, 2020, 4:19 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The Feast of the New Yam occurs at the beginning of Chapter Five of this great novel dealing with the clash of two radically different civilisations. We are told that this feast is an occasion to...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2011, 5:31 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, yams are by far the most important crop to the traditional Igbo farmers within Umuofia. They are a sign of a man’s wealth, and a family with yams is a family...

Latest answer posted April 25, 2016, 11:03 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo resents his father for being a poor, unmanly, unsuccessful debtor. Okonkwo was ashamed of his father and embarrassed by his behavior, which motivated him to develop a...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2020, 12:03 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Okonkwo is exiled from his tribe for seven years, during which time he's sent to his motherland. Before the exile, Okonkwo was a leader of his tribe and someone who mostly adhered to the traditions...

Latest answer posted March 20, 2019, 2:11 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

It is certainly true that palm oil is a highly-valued staple among the Igbo. It is used as lamp oil and for religious sacrifices, as well as for cooking. Food is both cooked in palm-oil and served...

Latest answer posted December 20, 2019, 7:30 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

As was mentioned in the previous post, Okonkwo had recently called a man with no titles a woman during a meeting. Okonkwo's callous nature and harsh response upset the other elders at the meeting....

Latest answer posted April 1, 2017, 11:46 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Achebe explores the concept of one's chi throughout his classic novel Things Fall Apart by examining Okonkwo's fate. While the concept of chi can be interpreted in several different ways, it can be...

Latest answer posted August 19, 2019, 10:38 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Quite understandably, both Okonkwo and Nwoye reacted to Ikemefuna’s death with feelings of heartbreak and devastation. It was an event that would set lifelong changes into motion for both of them....

Latest answer posted March 29, 2020, 4:03 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

The proverb a man who pays respect to the great paves the way for his own greatness has a twofold meaning in Things Fall Apart. The first meaning is the literal one, where we witness Okonkwo...

Latest answer posted December 1, 2014, 10:22 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

When Obierika first mentions a white man to Okonkwo in chapter 15, Okonkwo asks if he means an albino, making it clear that Okonkwo is not familiar with white people. Obierika goes on to describe...

Latest answer posted June 25, 2019, 7:22 pm (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Some of Okonkwo's achievements mentioned by Chinua Achebe at the beginning of Things Fall Apart are as follows: As a young man, Okonkwo became famous as a wrestler when he threw Amalinze the Cat,...

Latest answer posted January 25, 2021, 11:00 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Ekwefi tells Ezinwa an old story from Igbo folklore. In the story, some birds are about to enjoy a feast in the sky. A greedy tortoise wants to get a piece of the action, so he asks the birds to...

Latest answer posted June 8, 2018, 11:10 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo represents the best part of the tribal values in various ways. At the same time, he represents the worst part of tribal life according to what the tribe values. Truly,...

Latest answer posted April 20, 2013, 3:17 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Chapter Seven makes it clear that the arrival of Ikemefuna into Okonkwo's household has been very positive for Nwoye. At the beginning of the novel, Nwoye is depicted as a rather feminine young boy...

Latest answer posted December 30, 2012, 6:35 am (UTC)

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Things Fall Apart

Ekwefi is Okonkwo’s second wife and she is portrayed as an extremely bold, determined woman. Unlike Okonkwo's other wives, Ekwefi is not afraid to talk back to her husband and has the audacity to...

Latest answer posted May 7, 2019, 9:18 pm (UTC)

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