But because Ezinma is female, she cannot function in this capacity. Moreover, even a woman, in a traditional reading of the text would support this notion" (Strong-Leek). The fact that society was patriarchal at the time was especially devastating for women. Moreover, women readers are probable to consider that it is perfectly natural for Ezinma to be unable to follow her father's footsteps because society as a whole has had a tendency to underestimate women. In order for one to actually be able to appreciate Ezinma, he or she first needs to overcome diverse stereotypes that might spring into mind when trying to understand her position.
It is difficult to determine whether the Ibo society discriminates women because it feels that this is the way that nature works or whether it puts across this attitude because it actually considers women to be inferior. hen looking at things from the perspective…… [Read More]
Chinua Achebe / Buchi Emecheta
In Buchi Emecheta's book, The Joys of Motherhood, colonialism is already instituted and through the main character, Nnu Ego, we are able to see what post-colonialism looks like from a woman's perspective. The reader has the knowledge of hindsight and what colonialism did in Africa, the major impact of it, however, the story that Emecheta creates completely avoids anachronism. The characters in Emecheta's book only know what they know is going on in their society at that time; they don't seem to know what we know now about colonialism. Chinua Achebe's book, Things Fall Apart, on the other hand, tells the tale of life before colonialism and when the white man came to a Nigerian village and the events that ensued after and how life changed for Nigerians. We understand through reading Achebe's work that colonialism came into Nigerian culture in a slow but constant…… [Read More]
Chinua Achebe's fifth novel, Anthills of the Savannah, was first published in 1987, some fifteen years after his fourth novel, A Man of the People. In Anthills of the Savannah, Achebe states his abhorrence of any theory of radical transformation of society. "Society is an extension of an individual," he says through Ikem Osodi, his protagonist. "The most we can hope to do with a problematic psyche is to re-form it."
Achebe leaves no one in doubt regarding what he means by reform. No psychoanalyst, he argues further, would strive to alter the core of the personality of a problematic person. All he is expected to do is to alter "some details in the periphery." ut, to be fair, Achebe wrote his novel without the benefit of further insight that the political turmoil, which overtook the nation in the nineties would have offered him.
In Chapter Nine of Anthills of…… [Read More]
It is this process of dehumanization of the colonial populations that justifies their own imperialistic behavior. In a similar manner, the human psyche may really be incapable of the kinds of structures and deeds necessary to subjugate a population. In order to do so, then, the colonial population slips into a sense of unreality and justification, accelerating dehumanization in order to allow for colonial subjugation (Fanon, 108, 171-4).
Achebe, C. hings Fall Apart. New York: Anchor Books, 1994.
Achebe's first novel, is a story centered in an African village of the late 1880s. At this time, European missionaries and other outsiders have not arrived and the ho clan lives much as it has for hundreds of years. Leadership and status are based on a man's personal worth and what he contributes to the tribe. he main character in the book, Ohonkwo, is well-respected and has just the qualities of…… [Read More]
These converts become zealots and actually kill the village's sacred python. e read no one believed "such a thing could happen" (158). The violence shocks some in the community but not in the way we might expect. Okonkwo wants to chase the missionaries away but the clan overrules his idea is overruled and ostracizes him. This is interesting human behavior. Some clansmen are opposed and others are not and we can only chalk it up to the imperceptible differences of man as to why. In addition, membership to the church continues to grow as the old ways of the clan are seemingly left behind. The Igbo tribe was beginning to blend new ideas with old ones. Their changing attitude toward the missionaries is interesting to study. Their resistance wanes over time and we must ask if this is simply human nature. Like overwhelmed, tired parents, the Igbo tribe finally broke…… [Read More]
In the end, he cannot cope with what is happening to him and chooses to deal with things in his own way. Jonathon, too, is a man that is faced with challenges in his community. His outlook is more positive and he chooses to cope by adapting as best as he can. Adapting was something that Okonkwo simply could not do and would not do. These men represent the fragility and the resiliency of man. They are both strong men and fight for what they want. Achebe wants us to see thee men as representations of all of man - the creature that would like to think he knows it all. This notion brings us to Achebe's idea presented in "Knowing Robs All." Here, Achebe asks us to look at ourselves though the same prism that we view these men knowing that when we do so, we will begin to…… [Read More]
They were segregated to a corner of the village close to the Greta Shrine and they were considered to be at the bottom of the societal rung, well below the children. In a sharp contrast, the Christianity disregarded the social order of the Umuofia people and imbibed the Osu into the church, shaving off the tangled hair off their heads and treating them like brothers. They were taken from the lower societal position to be very important and rich people in the society and treated as 'all children of God and they must receive these as their brother' (Pg 111) as Mr. Kiaga, a stanch convert, referred to them as being.
The white man also disrupted the family pattern and peaceful coexistence that there was before their coming. There before, the word of the father as the head of the family was final unless overruled by the Egwugwu. This is…… [Read More]
doubt anyone can completely ignore racial issues. merica is not as racist as it was in 1963, but there's still enough to go around. However, I understand Elena's mother and Eugene's mother better than I do Chinua chebe's anger at Joseph Conrad. Conrad wrote his book in a very racist time. chebe acknowledges that we all grow up within a culture whether we recognize it or not. He says of a student that "... The life of his own tribesmen in Yonkers, New York, is full of odd customs and superstitions...." (p. 107) He is offended that others do not recognize the richness of the Nigerian culture he grew up in. In all fairness to the student, how could the student know? It is not the student's fault that frican history was left out of the young man's history classes. Perhaps chebe doesn't realize that when he wrote his speech,…… [Read More]
Things Fall Apart is not necessarily a novel about globalization, but the implications of a changing world -- and that includes issues related to globalization along with the fading of colonialism -- are an important part of this novel. On the surface this novel is the telling of a nationalistic-themed tale about the tragic circumstances surrounding the initial respect that Okonkwo had from the Igbo culture, along with his demise, which is the tragic fall of a hero.
Richard Begam -- History and Tragedy in Things Fall Apart
In his scholarly piece in the journal Contemporary Literary Criticism, Begam discusses culture in the context of the postcolonial dynamics four years after the Nigerian independence, by quoting the author Achebe from four years after the independence movement had succeeded. "African people did not hear of culture for the first time from Europeans," Achebe explained; "…their societies were not mindless but frequently…… [Read More]
Things Fall Apart repudiates imperialist and colonialist ideology almost goes without saying and is one of the primary underlying purposes and themes of the novel (Osei-Nyame, 1999, p. 148). Things Fall Apart is so much more than an anti-colonialist novel or even a post-colonialist one. The novel conveys complex moral ambiguities that plague human societies whatever their ethnicity or geographic location. Okonkwo is a fierce, unyielding, patriarchal hero whose misogyny and brutality are woven into the fabric of his being. Yes, Okonkwo attempts to resist colonial enterprise and its encroachment on his Igbo people, but the methods by which Okonkwo tries to achieve his goal ends in failure. Whether it was Achebe's intention or not, Things Fall Apart sends a potent warning about patriarchy as well as colonialism, and in fact reveals the way patriarchy and colonialism stem from the same oppressive structures.
One of the ways Achebe works a…… [Read More]
Religion in Things Fall Apart
Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart is centrally focused on religion, and the varied ways it can be interpreted and how those interpretations can be acted upon. (MacKenzie 128) Secondary to the Igbo religion, which plays an important role in the everyday lives of African's is the contrasting Christian faith of the missionaries that predate colonial interests. It is to some degree important to stress that colonial interests were frequently begun by religious figures as colonization was justified in many ways by propagating the idea of converting savages to Christianity, therefore saving them from themselves. It was therefore not unusual in the least for a second contrast to occur, as is described in Achebe's work of fiction Things Fall Apart, and that is contrasting personalities in white missionaries. The first as is described in the work is a kind, clam and open-minded person while those who…… [Read More]
Chinua Achebe presents an archetypal patriarchal warrior with the character of Okonkwo in the novel Things Fall Apart. Okonkwo is described as being “well known,” his fame being based on quintessential masculine feats like winning wrestling tournaments and having many wives. A round character, rather than a dynamic one, Okonkwo also epitomizes the classical tragic hero whose hubris and stubbornness prevent him from changing or recognizing what he could do to better lead his people. Achebe uses traditional storytelling methods and a straightforward narrative style to elucidate the main elements of his protagonist. The reader therefore gleans information about Okonkwo primarily through the narrator’s direct descriptions of the protagonist’s actions, reactions, and words. Motivated by the desire to maintain power and to fulfill patriarchal roles and norms in his society, Okonkwo ends up committing egregious ethical wrongs in order to achieve his egotistical goals, and in the end of the…… [Read More]
Okonkwo is a typical tribesman living and adapting to his surroundings. He is actually no different from anyone else in that he acts according to his heart. He truly believes he is doing the right thing and that is what matters.
Okonkwo is not a bad man; he simply makes mistakes and this makes him human. He does not set out to do evil. Upon hearing about Ezeudu's death, Okonkwo is saddened along with the rest of the tribe. Ezeudu was a noble man in the clan and he was also the oldest tribesman. At the funeral ritual, Okonkwo's gun explodes, killing Ezeudu's son. This is a shocking event because nothing like this had happened before. Okonkwo had to obey tribal law and leave the clan because it was a "crime against the earth goddess to kill a clansman's son" (124). The law of the land dictated Okonkwo could return…… [Read More]
V.S. Naipaul's Enigma of Arrival and Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart both show how colonialism affects individuals as well as whole societies. While Naipaul's book is more optimistic in tone and less tragic in plot than Achebe's is, both of these novels create compelling accounts of how colonialism changes the consciousness of human beings. The consequences of colonialism are difficult to treat in novels because of the varied manifestations of colonial practices and the different ways people react. Although both told from the perspective of the colonized, Enigma of Arrival and Things Fall Apart are completely different in tone, theme, and plot. The differences between the two novels illustrate the wide range of disparate experiences of colonization. One of the things I appreciated most about these two books was in fact receiving an alternative account of history, told through the eyes of the oppressed.
The theme of transformation is also…… [Read More]
But such a violent and unexpected murder, and to come in such a very uncivilized manner! According to what the other men told me, there was absolutely no provocation or intimidation -- they simply told the assembly to disperse, and one of them that had been in jail yesterday simply started hacking him to pieces with a machete.
The other men were understandably shaken, and I cannot say I blame them. We must all thank God that they were able to escape with their lives, though it does seems that only this one individual displayed such extreme rage.
Still, I do not relish my duty now. Like Daniel walking right into the lion's den -- except he had a king who threw him in, and I have only the weight of history and the advancement of proper civilization pushing me forward. And the lions Daniel faced were never so dangerous,…… [Read More]
Things Fall Apart" Achebe before referencing
Things Fall Apart: Summary
Things Fall Apart is the story of the tribal leader Okonkwo of the Umuofia tribe. At the beginning of the story, Okonkwo is rich and has three wives. He rules his family with an iron fist because he does not want to be like his father Unoka. At one point he beats his youngest wife so severely that even the masculine, patriarchal tribe is shocked. Okonkwo is always compensating for his impoverished childhood, which he sees as the fault of his spendthrift father. Although Unoka was a great musician, he was also undisciplined with his money, and Okonkwo wants to show his clansmen that he is strong. Okonkwo is ashamed of his oldest son Nwoye, who he sees as weak, and too much like the boy's grandfather. Okonkwo's daughter Ezinma is far stronger in temperament than Nwoye, and Okonkwo favors…… [Read More]
Role of omen in African and Indian Society
Both Things Fall Apart and Nectar in a Sieve weave rather vivid imagery of the life of women in the traditional, patriarchal society of Africa and India during the colonial period. The vividness of the images of cultures where a great deal of importance was placed on women bearing sons and devoting their lives to the care of their families, leads the modern day reader to easily conclude that women in traditional African and Indian cultures were without any voice and far too oppressed. hile there is ample evidence in both works to validate such a conclusion, there is a strong case to counter argue that women in both works are also shown as playing an important social role and depicted as possessing a great deal of strength of character. For one, women in African and Indian rural cultures seem to have…… [Read More]
In revenge, Okonkwo extracts the payment of the young boy Ikemefuna, to whom he gives to his first wife to raise. Taking the 'riches' of the competing Mbiano clan are equated with taking representatives of their next generation.
This anxiety over the next generation is seen in Okonkwo's treatment of his first-born, biological son, whom he fears will be weak like the boy's grandfather. Okonkwo clearly fears a crisis of leadership in the next generation, and he associates leadership skills with physical excellence and bravery, as this has gained him his status within his world. However, despite the emphasis on fighting ability, there is clearly another side to the Umuofia, as Okonkwo's father's gifts are valued and even warring tribes are able to exchange kola nuts and drink palm wine together in a symbolic exchange of hospitality. Finally, the conflict is not settled through war, and the young Ikemefuna is…… [Read More]
Things Fall Apart
Chinua Achebe is one of the most influential and powerful writers of today, and he is also one of the most widely published writers today. Chinua Achebe has in fact written more than twenty-one novels, and short stories, and books of poetry as well, and his very first landmark work was "Things Fall apart," which was published in the year 1958, when the author was just twenty-eight years old. This work has proved to be popular not only in Nigeria, but also in the whole of Africa, as well as in the rest of the world. Chinua Achebe was born in the year 1930 in Nigeria, as the son of a Christian Churchman and his wife. He attended the Government College in Umuahia, and then went on to University College in Ibadan, after which he went on to the London University, where he received his BA. Chinua…… [Read More]
If anything, the more languages in which a book is published the better. This way there can be as much cross fertilization of ideas and solutions to pressing needs.
Achebe, Chinua. Things Fall Apart. New York: Penguin, 2006.
____African Trilolgy. London: Picador, 2000
Ashcroft, Bill; Griffiths, Gareth and Tiffin, Helen (eds.). The Post Colonial Studies eader, London: outledge, (1995)
Bassnett-McGuire, Susan. Translation Studies. London: outledge, 1991.
Chevrier, Jacques. "Writing African books in the French Language L'Afrique littcraire et artistique 50 (1979): 49.
Janmohamed, a. Janmohamed, a. "Sophisticated Primitivism: The Syncretism of Oral and Literate Modes in Achebe, Chinua Things Fall Apart.." Ariel: A eview of International English Literature 15 (1984): 19-39.
Gikandi, Simon. "The Epistemology of Translation: Ngugi, Matigari, and the Politics of Language." esearch in African Literatures 22.4 (1991): 161-67.
Gyasi, Kwaku. Writing as Translation: African Literature and the Challenges of Translation.: esearch in African Literatures a.2. (1999).,…… [Read More]
In the novel, Ani possesses power primarily because she is the one who makes it possible for Umuofia members to have productive harvests and for women to bear more children, yields greater power in the patriarchal Umuofia community (30-1). The power Ani wields to the village reflect the importance given to agriculture and fertility, symbolic and actual concepts related to reproduction, which would not become possible without the participation and presence of women. Thus, Ani embodies the collective power of women in Umuofia, whose ability to reproduce makes them more powerful than the monied and powerful men of their village. Through Ezinma and Ani, female power has managed to emerge and become influential in Umuofia, although male dominance is tolerated in order to maintain the status quo in the tribe.
Achebe, C. (1994). Things Fall Apart.…… [Read More]
This tragic flaw is very clearly apparent in Okonkwo, the protagonist of Achebe's Things Fall Apart. He is very strong and very masculine according to the expectations of his people, and this both helps him to win success amongst his people despite the shame of his family background -- his father was not well respected in the community -- and causes him to be banished from the villages. This banishment somewhat ironically -- though in a perfect twist for a tragic plot -- weakens the villages and enables the white newcomers' ways to dominate the society, which ultimately leads to Okonkwo's "weak" death at his own hands. The beginning of the change can be seen when Okonkwo convinces himself to take part in the ritual slaying of a kidnapped boy from another village, despite warnings that he should avoid participation: "When did you become a shivering old woman,' Okonkwo asked…… [Read More]
Colonial Resistance in Things Fall Apart
Chinua Achebe was born in Ogidi, Nigeria, and his father was a teacher in a missionary school. His parents were devout evangelical Protestants and christened him Albert after Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria, although they installed in him many of the values of their traditional Igbo culture. He attended University College in Ibadan, where he studied English, history and theology. At the university Achebe rejected his ritish name and took his indigenous name Chinua. In 1953 he graduated with a A, and later studied broadcasting at the C where, in 1961, he became the first Director of External roadcasting at the Nigerian roadcasting Corporation. In 1944 Achebe attended Government College in Umuahia. He was also educated at the University College of Ibadan, like other major Nigerian writers including John Okigbo, Wole Soyinka, John Pepper Clark, Elechi Amadi, and Cole Omotso. There he studied…… [Read More]
Our Lord Himself stressed the importance of fewness...Our Lord used the whip only once in His life -- to drive the crowd away from the Church."(Achebe, 169)
On the other hand, Mr. Brown seems to have an overall positive contribution to the African community. Nevertheless, the author ironically implies that there is indeed only a difference in method between the two missionaries, and the decline of the Igbo culture already began under the more lenient government of Mr. Brown. For example, the school he builds can be seen as another way to indoctrinate the clan. This school is in fact the cause of other conflicts inside the Igbo community, since by attending this school an Igbo could become a 'court messenger', that is someone that would report and give out information from inside the clan to the white governors: "Mr. Brown's school produced quick results. A few months in it…… [Read More]
Storni, Alfonsina. "You ant Me hite." The Norton Anthology of orld
Vol. F. Ed. Sarah Lawall and Mayard Mac. New York: Norton, 2002. 2124-2125
The poem titled "You ant Me hite" written by Alfonsina Storni explores the issue of women mistreatment by men. The women complain how men expect them to be virgins when they (men ) are not.
Atwood, Margaret and Martin, Valerie.The Handmaid's Tale . Anchor.1998
In this book the author portrays how women are only valued for their fertility and they are allowed access to education in the patriarch society. This work is important to the research since it shows how women were mistreated by being regarded as sex symbols as well as not being allowed access to education.
Staves, Susan. Married omen's Separate Property Rights in England, 1660(1833. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1990.
This work is a recollection of the actual case studies and examples of various…… [Read More]
] [4: Ibid.]
In Things Fall Apart, the reader can see how the ritish and French began to institute their governing and belief systems. Achebe writes, "[Apart] from the church, the white men had also brought a government. They had built a court where the District Commissioner judges cases in ignorance" and the prisons were "full of men who had offended against the white man's law." [footnoteRef:5] Furthermore, Achebe comments on the integrity of men before the white man began to institute his laws and traditions. In Things Fall Apart, Okwonko laments, "Worthy men are no more…Isike will never forget how we slaughtered them in that war…efore the end of the fourth market week they were suing for peace. Those were the days when men were men."[footnoteRef:6] Ibrahima's ability to cash the money order is hindered by a corrupt bureaucratic process with which Ibrahima is unfamiliar with, and which ultimately…… [Read More]
Thus, the "ceremony of innocence" by which the boy was received into the tribe is now replaced with violence. Okonkwo, even though he loves the boy, kills him to avoid seeming weak.
Yeats' slow-moving rough beast with a lion's body but the head of a man may seem to represent Okonkwo, at first, in Achebe's novel, given Okonkwo's violence towards other people in the novel. But while Okonkwo is certainly rough, and unable to appreciate feminine and humane values, as embodied, for example, in his wife's tribe or in the missionaries his son turns to for guidance, the coming colonial influence to Africa could also be characterized as a beast. The beast moves slowly, and is at first imperceptible to the tribesmen who are concerned with their own internal disputes, but gradually the political and religious worldview of outsiders subsume the home-grown tribal ideology of the past.
Achebe,…… [Read More]
Thus, as Kurtz approached his death, he came upon the realization of this possibility -- a possibility that came true upon his 'defeat' (death). This realization was embodied in his exclamation, "The horror! The horror!" As he neared his death. Explicit violence was, evidently, just a "mask" that colonizers used to cover up their fears of the potential power and control of the natives over them (colonizers).
In the same vein, violence was also portrayed in Achebe's "Things Fall Apart," although this was expressed implicitly through the inherent tendency of Africans to view women as the weaker and inferior sex. Okonkwo's behavior towards his wives and daughters showed this animosity between sexes in African culture. However, it was also implicitly shown in the novel how, despite their apparent submissiveness, the women in Okonkwo's life and in the Mbanta tribe showed strength of character and control over males more than the…… [Read More]
If they can change the fundamental beliefs of the tribe, then they can control the natives more easily: "The white man is very clever. He came quietly and peaceably with his religion. e were amused at his foolishness and allowed him to stay. Now he has won our brothers, and our clan can no longer act like one. He has put a knife on the things that held us together and we have fallen apart" (Achebe 152). Confronted with change, individual members of Ibo society react differently. Those who stand to gain from change -- the outcasts, the oppressed -- welcome it. Those who have risen to positions of authority by following the old way -- Okonkwo, for example -- resist change. The battle between the old and the new is highlighted by the arrival of Christian missionaries and colonial authority. Okonkwo and Obierika recognize that many of their clansmen…… [Read More]
Terror, Imperialism, And Totalitarianism
Imperialism is defined in the abstract, quite often, as the ideology of 'carrying the white man's burden,' in other words, of carrying the white cultural burden of civilization to the native or darker peoples of the world. But in practice, imperialism often has a less lofty goal and terror rather than teaching is the method used to enforce imperialism's 'laws' and values of social and political control. In the past, such as in French-controlled Algiers, depicted in the 1965 film directed by Pontecorvo "The Battle of Algiers," imperialism is often enforced through a series of dominating policies or military actions by a stronger European nation. One country seeks to exert its control over another country or territory, often to gain an economic or political advantage in a particular region.
In the film, the Algerian people fight long and hard to wrest control over their own territory…… [Read More]
Fate in Literature
Stories whether they are presented in film, printed or orally spoken all share important commonalities. One of the important shared elements amongst stories that have been around for hundreds maybe even thousands of years in literature is the role of fate within the stories. Fate in literature can be broadly defined as the power, influence or will of a superior or supernatural force that stages and predetermines events in the voyage of a the main character in the story (Princeton.edu).
A classic example of this is the tragedy written by Sophocles, the infamous tale of Oedipus Rex a king who desperately seeks to outrun, challenge and contradict fate, but is unable to because the supernatural forces above him (The Gods), have predetermined and staged inevitable events in his life. Fate is a very interesting topic to explore as it relates to stories because it challenges the notion…… [Read More]
The village priest comes to talk to him, and says, "If you reopen the path we shall have nothing to quarrel about. What I always say is: let the hawk perch and let the eagle perch'" (Achebe). What the priest means is that he is willing to accept Obi's new traditions, so long as they do not interrupt his old ones. When Obi refuses and the school is partially destroyed, tradition wins, and blind denial loses.
Tradition also wins in "The Lottery," though the outcome is far from happy. The lottery of the title selects one person from the town every year to be stoned to death by the other townspeople. Only one line is ever given as a practical explanation for this; a sing-songy rhyme that suggests it is for a good corn harvest. None of the townspeople described are farmers, and in general it seems like the people…… [Read More]
Anthills of the Savannah: The Conflicts of Cultural Change
Anthills of the Savannah by Chinua Achebe is a novel that explores the conflicts associated with cultural change. It explores the formation of a new independent state and the issues that arise in the process. This includes the larger political issues that exist, as well as the conflicts that arise for individuals in the new state. This will now be explored in more detail, by looking at the cultural changes that Achebe considers, the individual conflicts that exist, and the major political conflicts that exist.
Before considering the conflicts that result from cultural change, it is necessary to consider the kind of cultural change shown in the novel. To do this, it is necessary to consider the real events that Achebe based the book on. Anthills of the Savannah is a book-based loosely on the Nigerian Civil ar. The Nigerian Civil…… [Read More]
God, the World, and Literature: The Concept of Social Morality in Modern Literature
Literature, as the primary source of information of people in witnessing and experiencing realities interpreted by the author/writer, is more than a medium that extends messages of reality and experience. Literature is, first and foremost, an expression of thoughts and ideologies that may or may not be agreed upon by the author or his/her characters in the said work. The concept of social morality is such example of these ideologies extended thru literary works. Through literature, writers are able to provide people with varying themes related to the discussion of social morality, offering people avenues wherein morality can be created and developed by the society, and adapted by the individual.
Modern literature boasts itself of this kinds of art -- literary works that depict the life of individuals who were directly affected by their own or…… [Read More]
Gulliver's Travels," "Tartuffe," "Madame Bovary," "The Death of Ivan Ilyich," & "Things Fall Apart"
The purpose of this paper is to introduce, discuss, and compare how the theme(s) of "Things Fall Apart" by Achebe relate to the theme and/or storylines of "Gulliver's Travels," by Swift, "Tartuffe," by Moliere, "Madame Bovary," by Flaubert, and "The Death of Ivan Ilyich" by Tolstoy. All these authors use their works to "expose and alter the fundamental moral codes that determine political systems and social mores" (Levine 136).
POLITICAL SYSTEMS AND SOCIAL MORES
Things Fall Apart," by Chinua Achebe is a novel about an African family named Okonkwo, who try to fit in to the white man's society. However, their own society was balanced, happy, and complete, and they did not really need to fit in with the white man. hen they did, it ultimately destroyed their society, and way of life.
Gulliver's Travels," by…… [Read More]
living in a time, individuals and generations do not exactly know what they are contributing in their history. Writers might have an idea that their work will be cited and used in the time to come, yet they do not have an exact idea about how their work will be used in the future and what position will it hold. The African writers have been writing about their culture like authors around the world. These writings are a source of information for us today to find what the culture of Africa is. The paper studies how the African authors have defended their culture and the journey of culture through time.
What is the contribution of African writers in defense of their culture?
The African writers have taken special interest in writing about the general harmony as well as the common contrasts. Popular African authors like Chinua Achebe, Alan…… [Read More]
Social dissent and unrest should not be the result of multiculturalism, the authors point out, but nonetheless those are the social realities, in many instances, of the new global picture. There is now, like it or not, a "blurring of cultural borderlines," the authors report; and as a result, the notion of culture within the word "multiculturalism" no longer refers to habits and customs of a people in anthropological terms. Rather, "culture" in the term "multiculturalism" alludes to race, creed, sexual orientation, gender, and lifestyles of various and divers groups within the greater culture.
A very poignant quote is offered in the conclusion of the editorial, a quote which cries out to be read to those reporting on, studying and/or dealing with today's dramatic cultural changes in estern societies; it is a statement by Aijza Ahmad, who reflects the perspective of "the less-well-to-do colonial states," according to the editorial. "It…… [Read More]
The novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe is a story about the culture clash that occurs when white colonizers arrived on the African continent and attempted to force the indigenous population to accept the empirical culture. hen the white people arrived in Africa, they perpetrated a campaign of superiority upon the indigenous peoples. They enslaved Africans and forcibly shipped them to toil on plantations for the rest of their lives. They also attempted to convert people from their native religions and force them into accepting Christianity. ith this set up, it would be easy to make all white characters evil and all the African characters as purely good. However, Achebe does not do this. Instead the main character Okonkwo is a troubled, "problematic" hero who performs actions which are not at all heroic or good which makes him more complex and ultimately more real which is shown in…… [Read More]
Things Fall Apart and the Issue of Culture
From a cultural analysis perspective, the two main cultures represented in Achebe's Things Fall Apart, stem from opposing religious/social positions and both react to and against one another in different ways, as illustrated by the actions of the main character Okonkwo, a native Igbo and leader of his community (violently committed to defending his tribe's ways and culture against other tribes and against the incoming foreign invasion of the Christian missionaries and British soldiers), and by Nwoye, Okonkwo's son who rejects the culture and beliefs of the Ibo tribe and converts to Christianity. The split between father and son represents the split at the heart of the novel between two cultures and two worldviews; neither is without its flaws and both speak to different matters of the heart and head. However, the irreconcilable differences that arise between the meeting of the two…… [Read More]
Okonkwo, the protagonist of Chinua Achebe’s novel Things Fall Apart, exemplifies the traits of a classic tragic hero. Determined to cling to the past and its out-dated traditions and social norms, Okonkwo uses violence to maintain his power and prestige in the community. As a result, he is a feared leader even more than an effective one. Through the character of Okonkwo and the setting of the Nigerian village, author Chinua Achebe shows how things fall apart when leaders resist change.
Things Fall Apart has several interrelated themes, the most notable of which is linked to the title. Okonkwo believes that in order to be an effective leader, he must use violence and aggression instead of methods that promote peace and collaboration. He understandably resists the colonial influences on his village, but fails to provide his fellow people with a viable alternative they can embrace. As a result of his…… [Read More]
Diaz's Examination Of Culture: Clashes And Identities
Diaz's Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is a combination of cultural experiences and influences that are as rich and imaginative as the stories the book contains. Within the main character, Oscar, lies the power to both transcend definition of culture and become victim or prey of a specific culture's stereotypes and norms. Oscar is an obese, alienated person within his own culture, but he is drawn out of his personal problems and violent existence within the Dominican dictatorship through his love of escapist literature and stories. Oscar even refers to himself as a "victim of fuku americanus," or the "Curse of the New World." (Diaz, 2007). This is an integral idea within the novel and helps to shape the cultural struggles that are contained within it.
Throughout this entire voyage through Oscar's life, author Diaz explores the mixture of cultures, languages, and ideas…… [Read More]
Not only is the phrase self-love used as synonymous with the desire of happiness, but it is often confounded with the word selfishness, which certainly, in strict propriety, denotes a very different disposition of mind." --Slewart. [Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary]
The novel "Things Fall part," by Chinua chebe, is a shocking account of the life and extinction of an frican tribe called the Ibo. The light is mainly on the main character, Okonkwo, who begins his search for self-perfection at a very young age. He was highly unimpressed with his father and vowed to never to be like him. Okonkwo and his family suffered through trying times but he eventually beat the odds and was very successful as the leader of the tribe. However, on beating his wives, he disobeyed the gods by refusing to offer animal sacrifice. The gods gave him a severe punishment. He was extremely selfish…… [Read More]
Chinua Achebe’s classic novel Things Fall Apart describes a critical juncture in Igbo society: the first point of contact with missionaries. Even prior to their arrival, the protagonist of the story, Okonkwo, contends with both personal and collective crises in his community. Okonkwo “was well known throughout the nine villages and beyond,” an introduction to a man whose power and prestige have become the cornerstones of his identity (Achebe, 1958, p. 1). However, Achebe (1958) also describes Okonkwo’s dark side: his severity, the way he would “pounce on people,” acting with violence and aggression to achieve his egoistic goals (Achebe, 1958, p. 1). As the community of Umuofia falls apart due to historical changes, external threats, and a leadership crisis, Okonkwo also falls apart due to his own existential crisis. Things Fall Apart has a strong ethical overtone, offering the reader insight into Igbo society but also into universal norms…… [Read More]
Okonkwo seems full of passionate intensity to preserve things as they are, and to preserve his sense of masculine, patriarchal authority. But although this sense of passion seems to have its origin sense of nostalgia for traditional forms of control, it is also too tied up the man's ego to be called a conviction. A true conviction about justice is not self-interested. It is also worth remembering that Okonkwo's father did not embody such authority within his own family structure, thus Okonkwo partly wishes to defy his own family's tradition. And Okonkwo's sense of wishing to preserve the positive aspects of his personal authority does not mean that he is not willing to kill his adopted son, for fear of looking weak, even though this hurts the tribe's future. Thus Okonkwo lacks convictions that transcend the self, and denies such positive self-sacrificing values as feminine.… [Read More]
European culture in Africa
Published in 1958, the book Things Fall Apart is an influential piece of work by Achebe that portrays, in most conventional style, the life and culture in a very traditional village in Africa. This book is about restoration of traditional values and identification of identity of African people in the wake of European cultural dominance and acceptance. This report is about how the writer has projected upon the life and revived the African culture as against the treat of European cultural imperialism.
In this novel the writer tries to enlighten the foreign world as regards to the cultural traditions of Ibo and in doing so the writer is also reminding the African people of their own traditions and cultural values. The writer is of the notion that the African people must not forget their old values, customs and cultural norms in this changing verve of the…… [Read More]
There is the feeling that Rushdie is toying with the concept of freedom of speech in this story as well as destroying the concept of the East as mysterious. Rushdie uses English to tell his story, but he incorporates the Indian oral tradition without any kind of chronological structure to the story. He deconstruct the binary opposition of East and est. He himself is between the Orient and the Occident and he chooses to use both structures, combining Britain and India (Buran 10).
The factors of race and gender complicate the relations of class in Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, ole Soyinka's "Telephone Conversation," and Jean Rhys "Let Them Call It Jazz" in various ways. In Heart of Darkness, the story is centered on the typical male experience, which tends to alienate the female reader from the very "mannish" story. There is some speculation that Marlow and Kurtz's sexist views…… [Read More]
"ould you like a white woman ongee?" Jimmie asked. "Don't seem ter make their cow-cockies happy, having white woman for 'is wife. hy else he come after black girls? Must be sum'pin to white women we ain't been told" (p. 11). The implication drawn from ongee is that aboriginal females are sexier than white women, but Jimmie is sexually attracted to the white woman.
On page 12 ongee describes an aboriginal woman who "Yawns for men and not with her mouth. She weeps for men and not with her eyes. She drinks men down, she is cave for men," he said, laughing. In Caledonian that Saturday night Jimmie "suddenly" was "pouring himself without joy into one of the women" while laying in the long grass so police wouldn't see them. The next time readers confront an image of an aboriginal females (p. 20) Jimmie "lay down with a scrawny gin…… [Read More]
Humanities 202 FINAL EXAM
Emilia: the wife of Iago. She provides the handkerchief for her husband, unwittingly facilitating Iago's orchestrated revenge upon Othello. However, she sympathizes with Desdemona, regarding all men as savages. She represents the ugly side of Iago's view of women, as there are hints Iago has abused her and he openly treats her cruelly when she irritates him -- eventually he kills her when she reveals his scheme.
Roderigo: a commoner who foolishly and hopelessly loves Desdemona, and stupidly trusts Iago. Like Othello, he also is desperate to advance in society and subject to the green-eyed monster of jealousy over a woman. Like Iago he is also jealous of those of more military advancement than himself.
Cassio: Michael Cassio is the man who Othello promotes to lieutenant rather than Iago at the beginning of the play. He is handsome and dashing, even though he is less experienced…… [Read More]
Literary Characters in Exile
Exile can be the self-imposed banishment from one's home or given as a form of punishment. The end result of exile is solitude. Exile affords those in it for infinite reflection of themselves, their choices, and their lives in general. Three prominent literary characters experience exile as part of the overall narrative and in that, reveal a great deal about themselves to themselves as well as to the readers. The three narratives in questions are "The Epic of Gilgamesh," "The Tempest," and "Things Fall Apart." All of the main characters of these narratives experience exile as a result of actions taken by the protagonists at earlier points in the story. The protagonist in each respective story are exiled because of their choices and the exile forces each character to face consequences that ultimately bring their inner character to the surface in a more direct manner…… [Read More]
Post Colonial Literature
Historical literature is filled with examples of pre- and post-colonialist paradigms. Within each of these models, however, there is a certain part of a larger story that can only be told in the larger view of the historical process. One of the grand themes that help us wade through that process is that of the dehumanization of the individual. For whatever psychotically reasons, humans seem to have the need to change others into less than human in order to subjugate them economically, intellectually, or culturally. We might even think of the process of imperialism as practiced by the European powers as dehumanization of culture and society; begun at the micro level and then evolving into the macro. This dehumanization was particularly exemplified by the manner in which indigenous cultures were decimated, how families were torn apart and scattered all over the Empire, and the manner in which…… [Read More]
They are rocked by a hand of fear, not motherly nurturance. They are obsessed by their fears, of becoming like his father in the case of Okonkwo and of not becoming like his father in Nwoye's instance. However, Nwyoe, because of the cultural and political shifts endured by his native land, has another framework of self-definition that his father lacks -- the availability of another culture, namely that of the Christian missionaries who have come to the country. To find a new identity, Nwyoe literally as well as metaphorically slouches towards Bethlehem. Within the foreign doctrine of Christianity Nwoye finds a prop for his sense of self against which his father's African nationalism and masculinity ultimately proves to be powerless. Through the weakness advocated by Christianity (a false weakness, given the overarching ambitions of the missionaries to convert all African natives) Nwoye finally finds strength that his father's worldview cannot…… [Read More]
The use of various artifacts as symbols is also important in showing the transference and transformation of values in many texts. In Whale ider, a whale's tooth that has been cast into the ocean serves as a symbol of leadership, and the protagonist's retrieval eventually cements her ascendance to the role of a tribal leader. Her positive arc moving away from traditional values is shown in her appropriation of certain physical symbols of this traditional value system. In this way, the protagonist both literally and symbolically adopts and yet transforms the traditional values of her tribe in order to achieve her own identity.
Artifacts are out to a much different use in Franz Kafka's the Metamorphosis. Of course, the arc that the protagonist of this story travels is also markedly different from that of the protagonist in Whale ider; Gregor Samsa is quite happy his traditional role of a grown…… [Read More]
The British created a well-educated, English-speaking Indian elite middle class d. new jobs were created for millions of Indian hand-spinner and hand-weavers
The Indian National Congress can best be described in which of the following ways:
a. An Indian Civil Service that administered British rule.
b. A group of upper-caste professionals seeking independence from Britain.
c. white settlers who administered British rule.
d. anglicized Indians who were the social equals of white rulers.
Under the Culture System, Indonesian peasants had to Answer:
a. learn to speak and read Dutch b. plant one-fifth of their land in export crops to be turned over to the Dutch colonial government c. convert to the Dutch Reformed Church d. join large state-run farms.
Modern Vietnamese nationalism traced much of its inspiration to Answer:
a. Japanese modernization.
b. China's "Hundred Days" Reform program.
c. The U.S. Declaration of Independence.
d. British Fabian socialism.
The…… [Read More]
erewolf, Harrison Bergeron, and a Continuity of Parks
hen considered together, seemingly disparate stories can sometimes actually serve to illuminate each other better than a discrete reading of any given text. ith that in mind, this essay will examine the short stories "Harrison Bergeron," "The erewolf," and "A Continuity of Parks" in conjunction with each other, specifically looking at how each story challenges the reader's assumptions with a kind of "surprise" twist at the end. In particular, the unique way in which each story reveals the reality of the situation demonstrates how different stories may accomplish the same goal using means especially relevant to that particular story, because where "Harrison Bergeron" uses the bluntness of language to shock its reader out of a reverie, "The erewolf" adapts a well-known fairy tale as a means of subverting the reader's assumptions, and "A Continuity of Parks" uses the structure of the narrative…… [Read More]
control over one's own destiny is an illusion of misconstructed ideals and metaphysical analysis. Beginning with Sigmund Freud's fascination with the power of the unconscious which he explicitly details through his work Dora (1963), the influence that the unconscious has on an individual is explicated and determined to practically guide everything that one does, but without really giving the illusion that one is in control. The unconscious controls the self, but does it define who one is? When there is no sense of control or free will, things fall apart. One wants to know that one can influence the way that one's life turns out, but in reality, a very small number of things are actually under one's control. By attributing all sense of control and destiny to the unconscious, one either loses the definition of who one is as a person, or gives up any sort of power in…… [Read More]
Importance of the humanities in the professions:
A comparison of "Paul's Case," Muriel's Wedding and Andy Warhol's rendition of Marilyn Monroe
The modern concept of 'celebrity' is that anyone can be famous, provided that he or she embodies an ideal of glamour, using material trappings like clothing and possessions to show his or her 'specialness.' This is a common method of 'selling' a particular product in business.
The idea is paradoxical -- on one hand, celebrities are special, on the other hand the media suggests everyone can be a celebrity and 'famous for 15 minutes' if they buy the right item.
This can be seen in "Paul's Case" by Willa Cather, about a boy who feels as if he is above his classmates.
Paul desires to have a celebrity-like status, based upon his perceptions of himself as having innately refined tastes.
But this costs money, and Paul is unwilling…… [Read More]
History Of Egypt
Civilization Emerges in the Nile Valley 2-3
The Age of the Pharaohs (3200 CE - 30 CE) 3-4
ritish Colonial Rule (1914-1954) 4-5
Modern Egypt (1954 -- Present Day) 5-6
Conclusion & Suggestions
Egypt has always remained one of the most intriguing areas on the planet, with historians, archaeologists and laymen alike flocking to the country on a steady basis throughout the last two centuries to indulge their curiosity and explore the heart of human civilization. The home of iconic monuments built by the world's first civilizations -- including the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Sphinx and a wide assortment of temples and ruins -- Egypt has come to represent the age of humanity's emergence for modern society. The age old cities of Cairo, Alexandria and Luxor have become modernized during the last century, but visitors and residents to Egypt have come to recognize the nation's seemingly…… [Read More]