The Fire That Was Obliterated by The Seed of Religion

Topics: Things Fall Apart, Igbo people, Chinua Achebe Pages: 4 (1481 words) Published: February 23, 2014
"Was the spread of Christianity to Umuofia a good thing or bad thing?", is a question prompted by Chinua Achebe's book, Things Fall Apart, which demonstrates the collision caused by Western ideas, in this case, the British missionaries into Ibo culture. This new introduction of western religion into the Nigerian heartlands is an extraordinarily debatable topic that strives to answer this question. Telling the story from the perspective of a single character allows us to know and feel what Okonkwo feels about this new religion invading his home, Umuofia. This helps us connect to the many overarching themes presented in this novel such as the danger of a single sided story or reputation and as well as respect. However, the theme that inevitably seems to shine out the most would be the concept of culture and if it can really be destroyed. But what does destroy even mean? Does the culture simply vanish, or did it perhaps break into pieces? Were their traditions shattered beyond repair? The answer is no, culture cannot be destroyed. It is simply just forgotten or lives on in an inanimate form. Based on the reactions of a person, it really defines whenever culture can be truly destroyed. If one chooses to submit to the new influence of culture and become open-minded, then it cannot be destroyed. Instead it will forever live on in their memories. But when one chooses to reject this new influence, they feel conflicted that their culture is being ‘destroyed’. Okonkwo is one of the highest and well respected warriors in his fatherland. He defines and represents how the Ibo tribe was like prior to the introduction of Christianity. In an even more broader retrospect, he, himself, is an example of one who takes immense pride in their culture. When an outside force invades and threatens to overtake one's culture, Okonkwo is a lucid example of how one would react, negatively towards the situation.

Okonkwo, the son of the lazy Unoka, strives to be something his...
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