Things Fall Apart Reaction (2008?)

For all the difficulty that Okonkwo experiences enunciating each excruciating word, he retaliates with an aggressive nature and unrivaled strength. He doesn’t need to talk after he dominated one of the greatest wrestling matches of his backwards clan. When he couldn’t get his point across, he would “use his fists” to hammer home what he wished to say, battling for the respect and fear of his fellow clansmen. Ultimately, however, this aggressive attitude leads to Okonkwo’s demise as his family, fortune and home fall victim to his wrath. In a single, unplanned beating of one of his wives, he upsets both his family and his clan. He is exiled from the village and forced to return to his own family.
Okonkwo’s father was a lazy flute player, he is commonly characterized as, if not effiminate, then displaying many of the attributes of the women of their clan. Okonkwo’s contempt for his father and everything about him is a precursor to the driven man that he becomes. He desperately wishes to become a lord of his clan and though many discouraging events get in the way of this goal, he holds it sacred for the duration of the book. The cuture of Omuofia is such that women and children have very few rights. This prejudice is counterbalanced, however, with the word of ancient spirits. When Okonkwo accidently kills a boy, it is a feminine action, one less bad than unfortunate. Committed during the week of peace, however, his routine action is an affront to their greatest dieties.
Moreover, this follows his participation in the murder of his own adopted son. His actions are indicative of an aggressive personality that hinders his attempts to better himself. Ironically, he is rendered ineffective and practically as effiminate and useless as his own father, for whom he has perpetually held so much contempt. This is the great irony of Things Fall Apart.

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