Masculinity In Things Fall Apart By Chinua Okonkwo

2292 words - 9 pages

Things Fall Apart: Okonkwo’s Masculinity
The Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe is a straight to the point story, embedded with interesting elements that capture readers’ attention. In my view, when I read the story, I found many interesting things about the theme of the book. But The Masculinity Okonkwo was what captures my attention. The story opens up to a Traditional Igbo lifestyle, a theme which is highly stylized from its ritual to the actions performed for certain ceremonies. Most of the action Igbo tribe has been an attempt to show respect to the gods, for example, when ikemefuna became sick and his stomach swelled up their traditions says that he take them to the evil forest and kill him. The story also seems to focus on gender, family, respect and reputation, and religion. In fact, Gender which in Igbo tradition, sets standards and roles between Igbo women and men. Women in Igbo Culture are the weaker sex, but are endowed with qualities that make them worthy of worship, like the ability to bear children. Men in Igbo Culture are the stronger sex, which gives them the ability to provide for their family and has prowess on the battlefield. In Igbo culture, building a nice and respectable family is important and titles in their culture gives them respect and builds reputation in the ‘‘Umuofia’’ village playing a big role in Igbo tradition. Nothing plays a bigger role in Igbo tradition than religion, the ‘‘Umuofia’’ village worship the goddess of the earth are always careful to avoid committing sins of their goddess with a fear of vengeance that might wipe out an entire generation. In the story, the men of the Umuofia village seem to care a lot about masculinity, when Okonkwo is hosting a party he takes it very seriously and values a positive responds towards the party he just hosted. Okonkwo is the Masculine one in his village, taking everything seriously and trying everything possible to please everyone during events and ceremonies. The only thing he (Okonkwo) fears most is not ending up like his father, Unoka. However, Achebe ‘‘makes an insightful comment on the nature of masculinity through his representation of the tribal leaders. Achebe basically, was conducive in creating four alter egos of Okonkwo: one of which were the masculinity; next of his fatherly abilities; and the last of his family progress and four of his likelihood of success’’ (Achebe.179). My paper will explain how Okonkwo’s Masculinity from Achebe’s Things Fall Apart will be characterized by his fears, beliefs, and emotions for several reasons.
The first reason is the fears of Okonkwo’s Masculinity, in the story Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo masculinity is characterized by his fear of becoming like his father. Even though, Okonkwo’s father (Unoka) was a talented musician, he was still known for his laziness and irresponsible by Okonkwo. Since Unoka bad reputation was known for his failure to pay his debt, which brings shame to his family. However, he (Unoka) did not...

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