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Things Fall Apart

by Chinua Achebe
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Why are part two and three are shorter than the first part in Things Fall Apart?

Expert Answers

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The length of the first portion of the book serves to establish the great power and tradition of the Igbo culture.  Over hundreds and hundreds of years they had built a narrative of the world and its creation and how they fit into the larger perspective of the world.  Achebe uses this longer portion to serve as the introduction to this powerful and established culture.

The shorter second and third parts are shorter in part to demonstrate the incredible speed with which things did in fact fall apart.  From the introduction of the Anglican missionaries to the massive conflicts between white colonists and black tribespeople just didn't take very long.  The precipitous decline of this powerful and celebrated culture happened so quickly, so too do parts two and three of the book.

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