Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

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In Things Fall Apart, what is the cause of Okonkwo's fear and how did it contriibute to his eventual downfall?

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Throughout his entire life, Okonkwo's most pressing fear and the force that drives him to work so hard and fight so hard and just try to appear so hard is the fear that his father's laziness and reputation will follow him despite everything he does.  He is absolutely unwilling to accept anything less than the biggest titles and victory in wrestling or in war, etc.

This incredibly deep fear prevents him from ever considering any sort of compromise, his world view is very rigid and when things don't go according to his expectations or according to tradition, he is unable to adjust in any meaningful way.  This leads to the catastrophic series of events that end with his hanging.

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