Key Passage Commentary on Things Fall Apart

1049 words 5 pages
This passage, found as a conclusion to a chapter in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart, takes place after Okonkwo's return to Umuofia. A new English missionary has been set up in the village and has caused a great divide between the villagers. The main purpose of the section is to describe some of these events and changes that have taken place in Umuofia since Okonkwo's return. The passage is structured in three parts, each detailing about a different aspect. The first section focuses on Okonkwo's son Nwoye's conversion to Christianity and subsequent successes. The second part goes into detail about Okonkwo's arrival home to his clan and the change in the village. Finally, the last section includes Okonkwo's inner feelings and opinions …show more content…

Even the people who think the culture is evil still talk about nothing else. Thus, Okonkwo's return gets almost fully overlooked by the villagers. Again, the author uses words, "evil," and "warrior," that seem to suggest a bigger event coming in the novel. This event will arise from the change in the village and Okonkwo's failure to adapt to it. The last section is the shortest of all three, though it says just as much as the other two. This part shows Okonkwo's emotions and attitude towards the surrounding events. The word that stands out here is "grief." Inside, Okonkwo is mourning for the past, which he desperately wants to return to. He is not only sorry for his situation, but for the fate of the entire clan. Okonkwo says that the clan is "breaking up and falling apart," which can be connected to the title of the entire book, Things Fall Apart. He also grieves for the men of Umuofia, which he says were warlike in the past but now have become "soft like women." Okonkwo frequently describes people as being "womanly" if he feels they are weak or cowardly. In exile in his motherland, Uchendu, his uncle, tries to explain how femininity is essential and, though Okonkwo refuses to believe it, just as strong as the masculine side. Okonkwo ignores this warning and feels that negotiation, compliance, and


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