Many works of literature contain scenes of violence. This is mostly because that scene or scene of violence usually has a larger meaning in the plot of the story. I chose to use one of our summer reading books, “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe, to show why this is true. This work of literature is centered on the life of Okonkwo, a “strong man” of an Ibo village in Nigeria. He is a very strict and violent person, but this is only because ever since a young age he has hated his father’s failure. When his father died he makes a promise to himself that he will never be like his father. His father was a lazy, careless, and weak man. Okonkwo was determined to be everything his father was not, making him a strong, violent, and strict working man.
“Things Fall Apart” has many scenes of violence throughout it. Most of them are related to Okonkwo in one way or another, weather he is the one being violent or not. One of the reasons violence is so important to this novel is that it shows how a person can act when they are so strict and stubborn. Since Okonkwo has a personality like this he is more likely to be violent than not. He is also very sheltered, meaning that he has built an emotional wall around himself, making it practically impossible for him to be compassionate towards anyone. He shows no emotion and always keeps a stern front. He may be felling something, but more than likely won’t show it. He will keep it bottled up inside, making him more likely to lash out in violence, which he does numerous times throughout this novel.
Like most literature related violence, the violence in this novel has a deeper meaning than just a character being angry. The violence shows the effects of an unhappy childhood and the embarrassment of having to live with the results of that childhood forever. It is also an effect of trying to suppress feelings of pain and anger for long periods of time. Perhaps the reason Okonkwo was so violent throughout this work of literature is...
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