Things fall apart topics

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Published on March 12, 2014

Author: bidajavaid

Source: slideshare.net

THINGS FALL APART

TITLE SIGNIFICANCE • COVER ARTIST C. W. BARTON • COUNTRY NIGERIA • LANGUAGE ENGLISH • GENRE HISTORICAL FICTION • PUBLISHER WILLIAM HEINEMANN LTD. • PUBLICATION DATE 1958

• THE ACTUAL TITLE IS TAKEN FROM W.B. YEATS' POEM "THE SECOND COMING." • THE POEM REFERS TO THE INCREASING PRESSURE TO MAINTAIN A STABLE SITUATION • THE NOVEL'S TITLE REFERS TO THE INCREASING PRESSURE ON THE UMUOFIAN CULTURE AND INHABITANTS OF THE VILLAGES REPRESENTED IN THE NOVEL TO HOLD ONTO THEIR WAY OF LIFE AS THE CHRISTIAN MISSIONARIES INFILTRATE THEIR WORLD • "THE CENTER CANNOT HOLD AND THINGS FALL APART." THIS LINE FROM THE POEM REFLECTS OKONKWO'S GRASP ON HIS OWN LIFE, FAMILY AND POWER IN HIS COMMUNITY AND IT'S SLOW SLIPPAGE AWAY FROM HIM.

• IT GAVE THE IDEA THAT "NOTHING LASTS FOREVER" OR "NOTHING IS ETERNAL" BECAUSE MOST LIKELY IT DEPICT THE WEAKNESS OF THINGS AND THE POWER AND INFLUENCE THAT TIME HAS OVER ALL THINGS. • THINGS FALL APART REFERS TO THE FACT THAT WITHOUT PROPER BALANCE, THINGS DO FALL APART. • THERE IS SYSTEM ON WHICH IGBO CULTURE DEPEND ON IT , SO CULTURE FALL OUT • “THE WHITE MAN IS VERY CLEVER. HE CAME QUIETLY AND PEACEABLY WITH HIS RELIGION. WE 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.” CHAPTER 20

REASON OF FALL DOWN • RIGID SOCIAL STRUCTURE ; WHICH ISOLATES AND SEQUESTERS THE OSU, THOSE WHOM THE IGBO SOCIETY CANNOT CONTAIN WITHIN ITS , „SYSTEM OF CLASSIFICATION ‟ • THE FURTHER FRAGMENTATION OF THE IGBO COMMUNITY, , OWING TO THE RIGID DEMARCATION BETWEEN A MAN‟S AND A WOMAN'S ROLE IN THE TRIBE • THEY GO WRESTLE, CELEBRATE FESTIVALS , GO TO WAR, WHILE WOMEN STAY AT HOME • THE OVERCONFIDENCE OF THE TRIBAL IN HIS ATTITUDE TOWARD THE NEW RELIGION “EVANGELCAL CHRISTIANITY ” • THE LACK OF UNITY IN TRIBAL‟S RESPONSE TO THREAT POSED BY THE NEW ORDER AND RELIGION

• OKONKOW BEING REJECTED BY THE PEOPLE OF HIS SOCIETY , ISOLATE FROM HIM PEOPLE AND IN THE END HAS BECOME AN OUTCAST , NOT IN LIFE, BUT IN DEATH. • OKONKWO‟S RECKLESSNESS , THUS LEADS INDIRECTLY TO THE BREAK-UP OF HIS FAMILY (NWOYE , HIS EXILE AND HIS KILLING OF ADMINISTRATIONS SONS AND FINALLY HIS SELF-PUNISHEMENTT ) EVEN HIS DEATH , HE IS SEEN , IMMEDIATELY , BY HIS PEOPLE NOT AS “HERO” OR THE “MAN OF THE PEOPLE” BUT RATHER AS TABOO “BY MAKING SCARIFIES TO THE DESECRATED LAND ”

• IN AN INTERVIEW GIVEN TO PARIS REVIEW IN 1994-95 ACHEBE CONTENDS THAT WHEN HE QUOTED W.B YEATS‟S OPENING LINE

DEATH OF CULTURE

• CULTURE CONFLICT  TRIBAL SYSTEM  THEIR BELIFS  THEIRS SOCIAL , ECONOMICAL , POLITICAL STRUCTURE  THEIR LIFE THEIR WAYS CLASHES

MAJOR THEMES • IGBO SOCIETY COMPLEXITY  FROM ACHEBE'S OWN STATEMENTS, WE KNOW THAT ONE OF HIS THEMES IS THE COMPLEXITY OF IGBO SOCIETY BEFORE THE ARRIVAL OF THE EUROPEANS. TO SUPPORT THIS THEME, HE INCLUDES DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS OF THE JUSTICE CODES AND THE TRIAL PROCESS, THE SOCIAL AND FAMILY RITUALS, THE MARRIAGE CUSTOMS, FOOD PRODUCTION AND PREPARATION PROCESSES, THE PROCESS OF SHARED LEADERSHIP FOR THE COMMUNITY, RELIGIOUS BELIEFS AND PRACTICES, AND THE OPPORTUNITIES FOR VIRTUALLY EVERY MAN TO CLIMB THE CLAN'S LADDER OF SUCCESS THROUGH HIS OWN EFFORTS. THE BOOK MAY HAVE BEEN WRITTEN MORE SIMPLY AS A STUDY OF OKONKWO'S DETERIORATION IN CHARACTER IN AN INCREASINGLY UNSYMPATHETIC AND INCOMPATIBLE ENVIRONMENT, BUT CONSIDER WHAT WOULD HAVE BEEN LOST HAD ACHEBE NOT EMPHASIZED THE THEME OF THE COMPLEX AND DYNAMIC QUALITIES OF THE IGBO IN UMUOFIA.

• CLASH OF CULTURES • AGAINST ACHEBE'S THEME OF IGBO CULTURAL COMPLEXITY IS HIS THEME OF THE CLASH OF CULTURES. THIS COLLISION OF CULTURES OCCURS AT THE INDIVIDUAL AND SOCIETAL LEVELS, AND THE CULTURAL MISUNDERSTANDING CUTS BOTH WAYS: JUST AS THE UNCOMPROMISING REVEREND SMITH VIEWS AFRICANS AS "HEATHENS," THE IGBO INITIALLY CRITICIZE THE CHRISTIANS AND THE MISSIONARIES AS "FOOLISH." FOR ACHEBE, THE AFRICANS' MISPERCEPTIONS OF THEMSELVES AND OF EUROPEANS NEED REALIGNMENT AS MUCH AS DO THE MISPERCEPTIONS OF AFRICANS BY THE WEST. WRITING AS AN AFRICAN WHO HAD BEEN "EUROPEANIZED," ACHEBE WROTE THINGS FALL APART AS "AN ACT OF ATONEMENT WITH [HIS] PAST, THE RITUAL RETURN AND HOMAGE OF A PRODIGAL SON." BY HIS OWN ACT, HE ENCOURAGES OTHER AFRICANS, ESPECIALLY ONES WITH WESTERN EDUCATIONS, TO REALIZE THAT THEY MAY MISPERCEIVE THEIR NATIVE CULTURE.

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