When A Culture Falls Apart Essay

670 words - 3 pages

When a culture falls apart
During the late 1800s, the Ibo culture was thriving in the villages of Southeastern Nigeria, but specially in the village of Umuofia. Okonkwo is one of Umuofia's strongest leaders and is also a very masculine man that has no clue that everything around him is about to change (Achebe 3). An invading British culture is about to challenge everything the Igbo people know about their world (138). The story is mainly about how the Igbo culture is held together, the changes the new culture is imposing , and how everything led to Okonkwo's downfall.
What initially held the Ibo culture together was their religion and their views on masculinity. Their religion controlled almost every aspect of their life. For example, if a women gave birth to twins they would have to throw them away in the Evil Forest, which the Igbo people believed held evil spirits (62).Their views on masculinity were also very important. A man in their culture needs to be strong and would need to have titles in order to be considered a real man. But Okonkwo’s view of a man were little more extreme, he thinks that if a man has no titles he should be considered effeminate.
The new British culture brought new problems and ideas as they settled in their villages. The new culture was originally not welcomed. But when the Christian missionaries managed to prove that the Evil Forest was just a forest and not a wasteland where all evil was present people began to question their own religion. To prove that the Evil Forest was not evil they built their church in it and promised they would not dye as the Igbo prophecy had foretold (154). After a few days of doubt people began to convert to christianity and that was a huge blow to the Igbo culture. One of the reasons why people were attracted to christianity was because it welcomed anyone, and did not ostracize the...

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