Throughout the book “The Purple Hibiscus” abuse and tyranny are portrayed by Kambili’s father Eugene, who is both evil and loving, both benevolent protecter and emotional terrorist. He is strong in his faith and believes that no wrong must go unpunished, no matter how severe. He doesn’t seem to notice the negative effect it has on his family. Abuse, whether psychological or physical, where as in this case both, can destroy a person emotionally and mentally. They might even go as far as ending their own lives or ending the life of the person who’s caused the chaos in their life. This is seen towards the end of the novel when Kambili’s mother poisons Eugene and kills him after all her years of pain and suffering. In reality occurrences like this do not cease to exist. Infact it happens daily in the real world. The solution people like Kambili’s mother have chosen to rectify her family’s problem is no where near right; it was just an act of desperation. Desperate to get rid of this tyrannical lifestyle. Abusive relationships, whether it be between a husband and a wife, father and daughter, or father and son takes a toll on the person. In the case of the Adichie family, Eugene strives for perfection. He doesn’t hate his family, he loves them dearly, his intentions are good but the way he goes about doing it is morally wrong. There is a scene in the book where he punishes Kambili by pouring steaming hot water on her feet. While he does this he cries along with her. His tears show that he is sorry that he is doing this, but he continues anyways because in his mind it is the right thing to do. That’s another aspect of abusive relationships, the fact that the abuser does not see his wrong. Eugene beats his wife and two children because he thinks it is the right form of discipline. Despite the way he treats Kambili, she constantly sees the need to make him proud. She’s happy when she makes him proud. Even after his death, she thinks about how he would be...
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