Things Fall Apart

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What others may think of you should not be the force that drives you, in Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo lived each day trying to prove that he was a strong man even if it required him to make the wrong decisions. Okonkwo was a man of great honor in the village of Umoufia. He was well known throughout the nine villages and even beyond. His fame was due to his personal achievements. He lived in fear of being a failure or thought weak as his father was; Okonkwo did everything in his power to have the respect of his people and to be a “man.” Being that his main focus was to always do be masculine; this led to his downfall and caused him to be punished by Chielo. Ikemefuna was a young boy sacrificed to the village of Umoufia because his father killed a daughter of their village. Ikemefuna lived with Okonkwo and his family for three years. Okonkwo was fond of Ikemefuna though he never openly showed any emotion, he treated him as a son. He was a very lively boy, intelligent and had a strong work ethic which Okonkwo’s first son, Nwoye, lacked. Ikemefuna and Nwoye were inseperable, Nwoye enjoyed spending time with Ikemefuna; he seemed to know everything. Prior to Ikemefuna’s arrival in Umoufia, Nwoye “was already causing his father great anxiety for his incipient laziness,”(Achebe, 1994, Pg. 13), therefore Okonkwo liked him spending time with Ikemefuna because he taught him how to be a man. Ekwefi was the second wife of Okonkwo, she was good friends with Chielo whom she shared a common shed in the market. Chielo was the priestess of Agbala, the Oracle of the Hill and Caves. She was a very powerful woman but if you met her on an ordinary day you “would hardly believe she was the same person who prophesied when the spirit of Agbala was upon her” (Achebe, 1994, Pg. 49). Chielo heard the news of Ekwefi being beaten and nearly killed by Okonkwo and this angered her and was the reason she decreed Ikemefuna’s death. Chielo allowed three years to pass before deciding to sacrifice...
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