Chinua Achebe

The Use of Ethos, Logos and Pathos in the Book “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Ethos, Logos and Pathos. They are one of the most important parts of literature that can’t be replace. They provided the ethical appeal, the emotional and the conviction of logic to the novel and the reader. In the book “Things Fall Apart”, the author have used Ethos, Logos and Pathos Beautifully well one of the reason is because he is an African so he imagine how the village in the book, the culture and many more. But how can Ethos, Logos and Pathos of “Things Fall Apart” relate to our real world. The use of Ethos, Logos and Pathos of the book “Things Fall Apart” has given readers an idea of how the fictional world can have a close relationship with our real world.

Frist off Ethos of “Things Fall Apart” has a close relationship with our real world. In page 13, it describing how Okonkwo ( the main character of the story) have to work daily on his plantation from early morning to late afternoon or on the first page Okonkwo is established as “one of the fiercest warriors since the founder of their town engaged a spirit of the wild for seven days and seven nights”. Author of “Things Fall Apart” he somehow manage set up challenged to test the character limits and he doesn’t let the character to win or success without a challenged. Same in real life, you have to work your ass up to get your dream car or food to live, no one gonna give it to you for free. There is other example of Pathos and logos still waiting.

Second, How Pathos of Things Fall Apart relate to people in real life. ‘So when Ikemefuna came, which is the boy given to Okonkwo tribe to satisfy debt, come to the village; Okonkwo was given the responsibility to take care of him. Okonkwo treat Ikemefuna like his own son and he always proud of him. But when it time to finish Ikemefuna sentence. Okonkwo decide to go with Ikenefuna one last time before end up being him is the one who killed Ikenefuna’. So what is this have to do with Pathos? On page 63, the author shows the feeling of remorse in Okonkwo by saying that “did not taste any food for two days” and “did not sleep at night”. The author of this book want to create a multi faced character. Which mean outside, he want to show every one that he is a tough dude to doesn’t with nerve of steel stuff like that but inside he is kind and he want to take care of the whole clan and his dear family. So how is this related to the topic sentence? Well if you every lost like a family member or a beloved person like your lover you will understand the feeling. It a feeling of pain, confusion, scare about the future without them beside you, it a very mix feeling. One more to go.

Last but not the least, How Logos of Things Fall Apart relate to our real world. In page 114, When all the woman of the village is cooking for the wedding, A woman cries out, which make other woman curious and all they all about to leave but a priestess come out and said that if they all rush out, who gonna be in charge of the fire, what If the fire is out of control and burn everything then some of the woman stay and take care of the fire while other woman run out and see what happen. “It is logical that someone has to tend the stoves despite a cry for help”. So how is this related to us, well the author use logos to persuade the reader about normal logic that we have every day like when you have a flood in front your school and you can’t get in because you don’t want to wet your shoes, just take your shoe of and walk to their simple logic.

Although this book is a fiction but it shown us that how close between a fiction world to our real-life world is through Ethos, Logos and Pathos. But in this book, the author have create a story where he successfully create a character that have depth in him with Pathos. Overall this book is a great book, although there is many thing that is similar from the way that people in real life but there is also many other thing that it no similar to our real life world like why you have to killed one of your beloved adopted son because someone said so I doesn’t really add up.

Read more

Taking Control of Fate in Chinua Achebe’s Civil Peace

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Chinua Achebe’s “Civil Peace” takes place in post-war Nigeria. The story’s protagonist, Jonathan Iwegbu, considers himself to be a very lucky man as most of his family is alive and he still has the few material possessions he had possessed before the war. He is able to make some money putting his bicycle to use as a taxi and then opens up a bar for soldiers and “other lucky people with good money.” Jonathan’s good fortune seems to continue until one night a band of thieves knocks on his door. As a result of living through the war, Jonathan realizes the steps he must take to survive. He discovers that he can not trust anyone, that there is no one to protect the innocent, and that he must take his fate into his own hands.

During times of war, in any country, a person must be very careful with who they place their trust in. Jonathan learns this lesson many times, but one experience in particular illustrates it very well. One day during the war, an officer came to Jonathan and told him his bicycle was being commandeered for military action. Iwegbu, being a patriot, would certainly have let his bike go even though its loss would be greatly felt. However, the officer’s “lack of grip and firmness in his manner” gives Jonathan doubts about his authenticity. So Jonathan, thinking the officer to be a thief, is able to pay him off and keep his bicycle. If it weren’t for Jonathan realizing the man’s lie, he would have been unable to make the money he did after the war and his loss of twenty pounds to the thieves would have been much more serious.

The post-war situation in Nigeria, which the thieves refer to as “Civil Peace” is really a time of civil corruption. The government has no real structure and all of the services people expect from their government (protection by police, soldiers, etc.) are essentially non-existent. Jonathan witnesses the chaos that is caused by a lack of security force firsthand. While waiting in line for five days outside the Treasury for his ex-gratia award, he witnesses a man who just received his twenty pounds collapse in front of the huge crowd of people because a ruffian picks the award of twenty pounds he had just received off of him . It was not enough that neither the police nor anyone else did anything to help the man, but “many in the queues that day were able to remark quietly on the victim’s carelessness.” These people blamed the man for what happened, implying that what the thief did was expected and that the man deserved what happened to him. As Jonathan bears witness to all of this, he realizes he lives in a land of lawlessness and there is no one out there to protect his family but himself.

Through it all, Jonathan learns that his fate and the fate of his family are in his hands. Although it appears through Jonathan’s unending optimism that his family’s good fortune comes about solely because of luck, much of it was really due to their hard work. With no outside help, Jonathan is able to provide for his family and survive while most, including the majority of his coworkers at the Coal Corporation, are unable to provide for themselves. When the thieves arrive at his house, Jonathan knows no one is going to come help him, though he does call for help just in case. Knowing there is no one to help him, and also that if he wants to be able to provide for his family he can not give all of his money away, emboldens him to lie to the thieves by saying “if you come inside and find one hundred pounds, take it and shoot me and shoot my wife and children. I swear to God. The only money I have in this life is this twenty-pounds egg-rasher they gave me today.” He is also hoping that the thieves, likely as desperate for any money as everyone else is, will take whatever they can easily get. In this land of unrest where it is every man for himself, Jonathan uses his understanding of the post-war situation to not only survive the thieves, but keep enough money to continue providing for himself and his family.

Experiencing war can have profound effects on a person, and this statement certainly rests true with Jonathan. Not only does it cause him to be very thankful for everything he is seemingly blessed with, but it also changes him fundamentally as a person. His outlook on life is summarized by his favorite phrase “nothing puzzles God” . Essentially, he understands that he must take the good with the bad, and that it is all part of a greater plan which he cannot comprehend. This idea of fate is recurrent throughout Achebe’s works. In his first novel, Things Fall Apart, the idea is present through the concept of chi—an individual’s personal god that is responsible for that person’s good fortune. The protagonist of the novel credits his chi when times are good and when misfortune finds him, he asks why he is so ill-fated. This is very similar to the way that Jonathan believes that fate is responsible for everything, whether it was a result of his actions or not. In both instances, Achebe is able to depict the prevalence of the belief in fate throughout Africa and how much influence that belief has on people’s

Read more

Controversial Idea Of Banning The Book Things Fall Apart By Chinua Achebe

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Since the book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe released in 1958, there were a lot of requests for banning ‘Things Fall Apart’ because of the critical elements about colonialism. Should the book be banned?

Officially saying the author didn’t intend this unproductive requests by giving out the explanation and expanding the idea of censorship into the book through non-fictional elements. This depicted the ideology which dealing with the portrayal of colonialism and the association of racism in each word he wrote. Chinua Achebe didn’t only equip for the reader to notice about how far civil rights had come and how they developed, but the way he organized the events and character’s point of view seemingly resulted in usefulness story for children. Because of this intention to educate the public about the dangers of colonialism, this book shouldn’t have ever been banned. Despite on trending to state and write about the dystopian world (reflecting the reality) in the past, readers easily concluded that authors mostly based on real appropriate issues to write, which could inform students on the way of historical people lived.

Rich supplies on historical society included non-thinking actions and self-actions reclined on religion praxis. In consonance with the consequences reported by Pambazuka News, it said: “Colonized Africans were treated not only as sub-humans, but they were also denied basic rights such as education and the right to land for decent housing, farming, mining, and fishing. Colonial functionaries were honored for barbaric actions and atrocities. ” So, that was not a coincidence that the author of Africa Tomorrow, Edem Kodjo stated about the future condition of Africa: “torn away from his past, propelled into a universe fashioned from outside that suppresses his values, and dumbfounded by a cultural invasion that marginalizes him. The African is today the deformed image of others”. Probably knowing that reproducing many climaxes conceal behind the main ironic challenges, students further would gain valuable lessons from the ancestors’ frauds to the faults so that able to fix the ancestor’s problems. Things Fall Apart was the best consideration for children as its bitterness between races has long increased and kids’ reading this hatred only grew more for what happened to their people.

Allegorizing about the conflict between Ilbo society and the new Whites, the used of folktale ‘The Tortoise and The Birds’ announced the whole novel scenery. Metaphorical the images of ethnic people by birds by the description of many untrustworthy committed as to too light-heart believe in the evil compassion of whites. On the other hand, the greedy tortoise become a dictatorship that broke the rules in nature, it made it punishable appropriately. This lead to the conclusion that: “While this folktale works as an allegory for the colonization of African it also displays many truths of human existence. A prominent truth displayed in the folktale was the demonstration of what happens when one becomes too greedy. The tortoise who wanted more than those around him literally had a tragic fall due to his greed. While the tortoise became greedy about food, the concept of greed relates to other people in the novel. ” So in addition to expanding children imagination and their knowledge about world’s races, Chinua Achebe the author cleverly arranged the pure incidents of racism and missionary warfare so that children could absorb situations by associating with it. According to Quora reported about the book: “Though there are elements of British colonialism and the activities of the missionaries to convert African people, the writer portrayed it very well. The novel portrayed the price that people had to pay in a situation like ‘to-be or not-to-be…’, and it has a great impact on the story. ” Noticing to cover the banned elements of racism and portrayal colonialism, Applied of multi-sensory teaching plus anti-censored had formed up the suitable novel for any-ages civilians. For example, they learned by the powerful story with strong characters, great set of event, paced narration and a wonderful spirit for self-identity and self-respect.

Last but not least, the rational content by summarizing the book which readers are able to understand character’s emotions that could lead to variety studied of psychology. In history, people might analyze the corruption in term of a missionary which initiates people crazy and uncontrolled to themselves. Pursuant to ‘De-Scribing Empire: Post-Colonialism and Textuality’ by Chris Tiffin, Alan Lawson: “Colonized Africans were treated not only as sub-humans, but they were also denied basic rights such as education and the right to land for decent housing, farming, mining, and fishing. Colonial functionaries were honored for barbaric actions and atrocities” Pathos in the character’s senses of performing events based on specific sceneries, bouncing back the suitable native spirit to readers which studied of psychology could signify as understood. Indeed, personifications and emotions of enemy-kind and ally-kind expressed through the war of missionaries. Fear to be controlled or the glory gained from conquering both depicts enough psychos by different P. O. V. Here, Okwonko and his clan/nation faced the condition which was the shortage of inner-trusts included to all people. The condition resulted in the failure of defeated caused deaths and traditional lost. And also through these, psychological and behavioral aspects accurately described all aspects of science and society or learn about the general principles of a primitive society. In particular that identifying the causes of unconsciousness by following the meaningless rules.

Which enough shreds of evidence to deny the ban to Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart such as to educate and censorship about sensitive topics of the book, offering to read giving to the students appropriately reasonable. Concluding that the given pieces of knowledge presented, brought the facilities for readers to commit to the outlaw world. African colonists were forced to follow the hybridity principles and were contrary to ethical principles and they couldn’t ignite or protest because then they may die. Nor arguing about the deviation of the white dictatorship of being too foolish in missionaries, greedy and cruelty. Informed the right of indicating racism and portrayal colonialism, and combine with the adopted of psychology introduction, the writer aspires to influence the society to read the novel and shift their thoughts from banning to step on the new level. After all, there were still real missionaries expeditions that present the gods as the model saint who controlled the indigenous people but not. So the story is a reminder of a world called Dystopian where students and kids could define the term of curious.

Read more

Summary and Review of The Book No Longer at Ease by Chinua Achebe

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

In the novel, No Longer at Ease, it demonstrates that going from tradition can be difficult. The book opens with Obi, a young man, is on trial for committing a crime. Then goes on to describe the hard times in Obi life, his mother who had just died, and his soon to be wife, Clara, who had just ended the relationship. The novel proceeds to flashback to where it all started in Obi life. Obi had just returned to Nigeria from British University, where he received an education for the last four years, due to the Umuofia Progressive Union giving him a scholarship. Coming back home Obi, overwhelmed with anticipation to see familiar faces, met a young lady named Clara. Their relationship and intersect with each other grew rather quickly. As he reaches home, the Umuofia Progressive Union threw a party in honor of his return home. Obi then stays with his friend, Joseph, in hopes of finding a house and job. Obi soon has encounters with bribery, when a man offers Obi money so his little sister can get a scholarship or when the girl herself came to Obi offering herself for the favor. Obi who has always been against that world rejects both.

Soon situations start going downhill for Obi, Clara had come to him telling him that, because she is an outcast they cannot get married. Obi disregards her concern, his customs, and decided they will continue with the marriage. To make matter worse, he is still in debt and then receives a letter from his father telling him it is time to go home. When returning, he finds his mother ill and very irritated with his decision on marrying Clara. His parents continually tell him Clara is an osu and they must not get married. His mother finally gives him a choice, marry Clara, and if she is still alive, she will kill herself or wait until she has died to go on with the marriage. Obi tells Clara about the chooses he has, Clara becomes irate and decides its best to end the engagement altogether. Afterward, Obi found out about Clara pregnancy and scheduled for an abortion to be done. Clara is then hospitalized due to complications in the surgery and refuses to speak or see Obi. Obi returns to his daily life and gets notified that his mother had died. Obi send the money he has for her funeral but does not go home for the funeral of his mother. Umuofia Progressive Union finds the act as if he had not cared about his mother’s death. With the love of his life and his mother gone, Obi grows into a deep depression and realizes that it was Clara who keeps him on track. Obi let go with all of his principles he has followed through his life and takes a bride, reassuring himself that it will be the last one. Obi realizes that he lied to himself and it starts to become a common thing. However, when Obi takes his last bride, he is caught and is found guilty, taking us back to the opening of the novel.

As I read this novel, the similarities didn’t stick out to me until writing this book report. Obi went to England for four years to continue his education. He mentioned in the book that the Umuofia Progressive Union offered him a scholarship to attend British University. I drew a parallel to Obi and I. We have all been blessed to be able to attend a college, whether it be in the same or a different state. We even have the chance to participate in a study aboard program in different in continents. At Harding, they offer around seven different programs, that can further your education, maybe meet the love of your life, or make you have an appreciation for other cultures. As Obi went to college at British University, he changed his course of study and went into a different direction. Many people who go on study aboard programs find a subject or something they are passionate about. For example, a girl on our trip was majoring in Speech Pathology. As she went to the clinic twice a week with the group, she had learned she enjoys the atmosphere, the different cases, and the acknowledgment of helping others. Not only in study aboard program but at our regular university as well. People change their major every day; we have to trust in God and his path for us. Finally, Obi was nostalgic for home; I understand that on a different level. It’s tough going far away from home for college. You get so used to the daily life there and changing your routine and atmosphere can be challenging to comprehend. As for us ten girls left the United States for our study aboard program in Africa we had struggled in a different way when going. We were out of our comfort zone and did not know what to expect. Some of us have experienced homesick, and some have not. We know the difficulties of leaving your comfort zone, but in the end, it is all worth it.

The novel, No longer at Ease, the difficulties one has in life. Whether it be leaving your comfort zone to go to college, or losing a loved one and the guilt that comes with it, the love of your life ended your engagement or being found guilty for a crime you had committed. Whatever it is you have to trust in God and his plan for you even when you wonder why is it happening to me.

Read more

Setting in Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart”

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Perhaps one of the most influential elements of literature, a setting may potentially dictate the plotline of a story, establishing culture, tradition, and a backstory. Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart sees an African world that largely revolves around the geographical location of Nigeria; this agricultural society serves as the vast foundation for a polytheistic religion and a reverence for the land itself. Not only are the values of the community of Umuofia meaningfully constructed upon this locational guideline, but the very essence of the protagonist, Okonkwo, and his unparalleled mindset, originates from this venerable attitude. In turn, the author himself, Chinua Achebe, brilliantly shares a traditional culture that is inherently dependent on the land itself, and how it inevitably leads to a clash of civilization where things truly “Fall Apart”.

Chinua Achebe attempts, and succeeds, to share a unique African culture that is inevitably and blatantly based on an agricultural society. Within this culture, the great value of yams, palm oil, and the kola nut are demonstrated as forms of wealth. In the first chapter of the book, Okonkwo is described as, “still young[,] but he had won fame as the greatest wrestler in the nine villages. He was a wealthy farmer and had two barns full of yams, and had just married his third wife” (Achebe 3), which shows that his wealth is accompanied by his status as a farmer, and the amount of yams he possesses. Thus, the high social standing of an individual is dictated by the amount of land he possesses, and the fruitfulness of his agricultural labor. Because the weather and climate serves as a key defining factor in one’s economic prosperity, a polytheistic religion revolving around the elements of nature prevails as well. A fear of the gods of nature are instilled within the members of this community, ultimately affecting the very meaning of life: to please the gods for one’s own welfare. This strength of culture and value results in the creation of the protagonist, whose very ambitions would be rendered obsolete and worthless without the underlying culture that is made possible by this land.

From the onset of the novel, Okonkwo establishes himself as a man of uncontested strength. He strives to the fullest to become the very opposite of what his father once was: a man who was a “failure” in Okonkwo’s eyes. What constitutes as “failure”? In the context of this novel, Okonkwo’s father is poor and lacks the wealth that is measured in yams. This very wealth is only made possible by the ability of the land to produce yams. When Unoka, Okonkwo’s father, consulted a priestess back in the day, he mourns of his misery, “I also kill a cock at the shrine of Ifejioku, the god of yams. I clear the bush and set fire to it when it is dry. I sow the yams when the first rain has fallen, and stake them when the young tendrils appear […] when a man is at peace with his gods and his ancestors, his harvest will be good or bad according to the strength of his arm” (Achebe 6). The display of sacrifice towards the god of yams shows the omnipresence of their religion. Moreover, the Umuofian community avoids angering the gods at all costs and makes their fear blatant. When Okonkwo beats his wife during the Week of Peace, he is reprimanded, but not for the assumed reasons of his abuse. Okonkwo is forced to repent, to prevent his wrongdoing in spurring the gods to unleash their wrath on the community as a whole. This demonstrates a seemingly interconnected nature of each and every individual for the welfare of the whole tribe, in efforts to preserve the very essence of the land and the life that reaps benefit and wealth from it.

Thus a clashing of two vastly different cultures leads to the inevitable downfall of Umuofia when the Christian missionaries make their long-lived and vastly detrimental impact on an already thriving society. Without the origin of an agricultural society, the European missionaries do not understand the greatness of a culture that is established upon foreign roots, as demonstrated by an interaction between Reverend Smith and Oberieka. The Christian missionary is unable to understand this polytheistic religion and ways of life; had he been brought up in this physical environment, he would not have disregarded and demeaned the spiritual essence of nature as foolish. Thus it is noted that as Umuofia is located in Nigeria, the missionaries originate from Europe. The outcomes of these contrasting settings are on opposite sides of the spectrum. Achebe’s very intent is founded upon the greatness of a culture that is ultimately destroyed by foreign powers who are unable to initiate any form of cultural diffusion. He details on this potent destruction, and how it destroys Okonkwo’s spirit and character at the end, rendering him hopeless and to his untimely death. This country setting of yams and gods of nature ultimately sets a unique warrior culture that Achebe effectively shares, justly glorifying a unique African community that is faithful at no ends to its very origins.

Read more

Summary of Questions of Character Joseph L. Badaracco Jr

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Chapter two of Questions of Character by Joseph L. Badaracco Jr. discusses moral codes and how leaders develop their own. Badaracco uses the story Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe to illustrate his message. The story centers around the leader of an African tribe named Okonkwo who is the “psychological and emotional counterpart of the strong, determined people who run most organizations today” (Badaracco, p. 31-32). At first, he is exactly the type of leader his tribe is looking for due to his strong moral compass. When the British attempt to change their way of life, Okonkwo tries to have his clan follow him in opposition. However, his tribe eventually rejects his leadership because his moral code “did not grow and evolve over the years” (Badaracco, p. 32). What originally made Okonkwo a great leader, turned “out to be signs of weakness, not strength (Badaracco, p. 32).

This story demonstrates the complexities of a leader’s moral code. Due to these complexities “it is critical for men and women in positions of responsibility to reflect, from time to time, on the soundness of their moral codes” (Badaracco, p. 34). Okonkwo’s life “offers several basic ways for leaders to test the soundness of their own deep convictions” (Badaracco, p. 51). His story also “warns us against viewing moral codes as simple, mechanistic devices” (Badaracco, p. 51). It is dangerous for a leader to think they are acting morally just because they believe they have a strong moral code. According to Badaracco (2006), a solid moral code has its roots in what the community values. It is dynamic and “requires an ongoing, open engagement with the moral and practical life that surrounds a leader” (Badaracco, p. 52). It is revealed in a leader’s failures as well as their reactions to them. Badaracco believes that flexibility is “the clearest sign of a good moral code” (Badaracco, p. 52). Okonkwo was so firm in his own beliefs that he ignored those around him that could have helped him develop this flexibility.

Discussion Questions

  1. How was Okonkwo in the story Things Fall Apart similar to the leaders of today’s organizations?
  2. He was a hard worker whose drive and determination lead him to the top of his community. He was “the psychological and emotional counterpart of the strong, determined people who run most organizations today” (Badaracco, p. 32).

  3. What do good leaders do when faced with their own failures?
  4. Good leaders “reflect on their reactions to them; they also look for explanations, and they start by looking at themselves rather than blaming others” (Badaracco, p. 41).

  5. What are the three standards that can be used to judge the features of one’s moral code?
  6. The fundamental features “can be judged by three standards: clarity, motive, and dominance” (Badaracco, p. 43).

  7. Why did Okonkwo fail when he attempted to act on his insights as a leader?
  8. Okonkwo did not vocalize his values and his code of ethics was not for a changing world. He needed “the ability to crystallize and powerfully communicate his convictions and ideas – in ways that resonated with the values and feeling of the people he wanted to lead” (Badaracco, p. 50).

  9. What does the story of Okonkwo’s life tell us and warn us against?
  10. His life reveals the complexities of one’s moral code. It “shows us the importance of a leader’s moral code and offers several basic ways for leaders to test the soundness of their own deep convictions” (Badaracco, p. 51). His story also “warns us against viewing moral codes as simple, mechanistic devices” (Badaracco, p. 51).

  11. What does Badaracco believe a sound moral code resembles?
  12. He compares a solid moral code to an “old, weathered tree” (Badaracco, p. 51). It has “deep roots in the values of communities and in the lives of their leaders” (Badaracco, p. 51). A good moral code also “grows and evolves with time” (Badaracco, p. 51).

Practical Applications

One of the main ideas that this chapter discuses is that leaders must continuously reevaluate their moral codes. It is important that they do not become stuck on their past beliefs because “the clearest sign of a good moral code is flexibility rather than firmness” (Badaracco, p. 52). Flexibility allows leaders to examine situations and act accordingly. A static moral code can lead to the downfall of well-meaning leaders.

Read more

Dead Man’s Path, Live Man’s Blunder

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Chinua Achebe, author of “Dead Men’s Path,” was born in a village in eastern Nigeria; because he was a the son of a missionary, he had a Christian upbringing. He was educated in England at the London University but finished his schooling at University College of Ibadan. After Achebe returned home, he saw Nigeria freeing itself from the control of England as the country won its independence. Experiencing these two colliding worlds in his formative years most likely influenced his story, since primary conflict in “Dead Men’s Path” is the strife between competing worldviews. The story is set in a small village which is contested territory throughout, as the headmaster struggles with the villagers over matters of control. The story’s being set in a small village is vital because small communities are more likely to hold onto traditional values than larger, more progressive areas. Michael Obi’s attempts, similar to those of centuries of Christian missionaries in history, to revolutionize the village set everyone back further than before he arrived. He goes against the formidable beast of tradition without the proper tools or attitude, and loses spectacularly. In his exploration of symbolism, point of view, and characterization, Achebe contends that prosperity is unattainable when the beliefs of others are not treated with the proper deference, even if such beliefs are not shared.

Nature is as much at war with itself, as the people are with each other throughout the story. The garden of the school, representative of all the modernity that Michael Obi is attempting to bring out, is constructed around the old footpath which has much more utility than beauty, going against the ‘modern values’ that led to the construction of the garden in the first place. In the eyes of Obi, the path is “faint” and “almost disused,” but is actually sacred to the people. It is symbolic of all the ideas that the villagers fight to hold onto, values which the newcomer believes he can control. In the eyes of a person trying to change it, the footpath is inconsequential and the garden the epitome of beauty, representative of modern thought with “beautiful hibiscus and allamanda hedges in brilliant red and yellow.” The garden engulfs the footpath, but the footpath cuts through the garden. Neither is willing to give the other its own space, trying instead to impede. Thus, neither the garden nor the footpath achieves its full utility.

While the story is written in a third-person point of view, the reader is given insight into the motivations of the protagonist. By seeing the story through the eyes of Michael Obi, the new headmaster, the reader is able to understand that he has good intentions such as introducing “a high standard of teaching” and transforming the school compound “into a place of beauty.” He is not simply a villain who storms in and tries to terrorize a village by tearing away what the residents hold dear. We are able to have inherent sympathy for the villagers’ fight to keep the footpath because they believe “the whole life of this village depends on it” as well as sympathy for the man who is trying to change things because he wants to help. Obi believes that the best way he can help the people of this village is to educate them, to modernize them, and to make sure that the children don’t hold on to their parents’ superstitions. His pure intentions are muddled by his unbending refusal to try to understand a perspective that is different from his own. Instead, he dismisses it, planning “to show these people how a school should be run” because the way they have been running it has been unsuccessful. It is this stubbornness that leads to harsh consequences for everyone, especially himself. His own negative review from his superior was a sort of cruel justice for his ignorance. Achebe made Obi sympathetic because he wanted people to understand the logic behind some of Obi’s measures. These people who identify with Obi’s valiant efforts are Achebe’s prime audience. The illustration of Obi’s dreams as literally trampled on is a powerful warning to anyone endeavoring to pursue work similar to that of this protagonist.

Most of the conflict that led to the destruction of property and desecration of sacred values can be traced back to Michael Obi. His perception of the villagers’ way of life doesn’t allow either group to flourish. He arrives believing that “The whole purpose of our school is to eradicate just such beliefs” and that he is ushering in the future; in reality, he is stealing a piece of a culture and dismissing any chance he has of a cooperative effort with the villagers. His initial assessment that “Ndume School was backward in every sense of the world” blinds him to the sympathies of the people he is supposed to be helping. His youthful, stubborn superiority and misguided attempts to lead these people to the way of life he deemed correct are what lead him to the restriction of the footpath in the first place. This kind of insensitivity leads the villagers to defend their beliefs with force because they interpret his actions as an attack and their later misfortunes as divine retribution. After the path is blocked, “a young woman in the village died in childbed. A diviner was immediately consulted and he prescribed heavy sacrifices to propitiate ancestors insulted by the fence.” It is impossible for balance to be achieved between either side because one’s success is the other’s failure. Given several chances to make peace or appeal to the wisdom of others, Obi plows ahead, ignoring it all and leaving everyone, including himself, dissatisfied.

In many ways, “Dead Men’s Path” itself mirrors struggles Achebe must have witnessed in his own personal experiences, as well as a common experience throughout the history of European colonization. Wars have been waged over religion and ideologies in the past, and most likely will be for a long time to come. There will never be a real winner. No real change can ever be made in the world if different cultures do not attempt to achieve mutual understanding, no matter how small the issue at hand. If such efforts are neglected, people will continue to block each other’s footpaths with barbed wire and trample all over each other’s gardens.

Read more

The Interweaving Of The Themes Of Nature And Human Nature In The Poems Catrin And Vultures From The Anthology

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

The poem Vultures which was set in 1971 and written by Chinua Achebe is a poem that talks about human nature and nature, the poem talks about vultures and humans while contrasting them together. The poem talks about the father who is the commandant at Belsen concentration camp who goes home to his loving children. The poem Catrin by Gillian Clarke is about a relationship between the mother Gillian and her daughter Catri and was set during the birth of Catrin, so the poem would be set around 1937 since that was the time when Catrin was born.

The context of the setting in the poem Vultures starts off as a cloudy, unhappy and gloomy. This is because the poem uses the verse “In the greyness and drizzle of one despondent dawn unstirred by harbingers”. which shows alliteration and highlights the fact that the morning is unwelcoming and isolated. Another part of the poem is the Commandant and his deeds which is shown when the author says “…Thus the Commandant at Belsen Camp going home for the day”. This quote taken from the poem shows that the commandant from the Belsen Camp who is also a father to his children does evil actions for working at a concentration camp is justified since his offspring are waiting at home for their father’s return. Overall this shows acts of both human nature and nature because the father sees his acts as normal and loving even with all the bad deed the father has done, this shows that a truly evil man can still show and feel love and affections to his family which basically shows us that love can perpetrate evil. The poem Catrin starts off at a hospital ward or more exact a labor ward since the first five stanza talks about the setting and how the mother Gillian can remember her and her daughter Catrin’s monumental experience, “I can remember you, child, As I stood in a hot, white room at the window watching The people taking turns at the traffic light”.

Overall the poem on Catrin is quite a personal poem because the poem’s structure is structured as a free-verse that talks about the author’s relationship with her child, Catrin. The author also uses the first person in this poem which shows that the poem is quite personal. it is also there to show parental conflict and complex relationship conflict. The poem Vultures has four paragraphs in total, the first paragraph starts with a graphic description of the vultures and the environment they’re in. The second paragraph talks about the vulture’s love for each other. The third paragraph talks about the commandant at Belsen and the fourth paragraph talks about love and evil. The first paragraph which talks about the graphic description of the vultures uses the letter ‘d’ to make a sad and negative feeling which helps with creating the environment they’re in, for example, drizzle, dawn and despondent which are words that start with the letter ‘d’. This is because vultures are quite cruel animals that stalk their prey and eat the dead. The diction “despondent” also sets a negative view because it means, in low spirits from loss of hope or courage. As well as the word “harbingers” which means things which warns of what to come. The author talks about how cruel vultures are and how they act. For example in the 8th stanza in the first verse, the author says “…mate his smooth bashed-in head a pebble on a stem rooted in a dump of gross feathers”. The word “stem rooted” is a juxtaposition which talks about the neck of the bird and the “dump of gross feathers” is the body of the bird. But the stanza also talks about the metaphor of death and horror and the branch that their sitting on is described as “broken bones”.

The third paragraph talks about the commandant at Belsen which is a concentration camp, we know this because the verse uses words and phrases such as “charnel-house” which means a building where dead bodies and bones are disposed. The paragraph also talks about the commandant being a kind, loving father who goes home to see his young soft children this is shown when the poet says “…for his tender offspring waiting at home for daddy’s return…”. The last paragraph in the poem is about love and evil. The poet talks about how whenever there’s darkness they will always also be light, the poet includes metaphors like “in icy caverns of a cruel heart or else despair for in the very germ” this means that a heart of an ogre will always be cruel, there is also contrast in this metaphor which is germ which equals to love. Overall the author is trying to push the messages through that love and evil will always exist together. This shows that in nature love and evil will always exist together as a whole no matter what.

The poem Catrin has two paragraphs in total. The first paragraph is during the childbirth and the second paragraph is a couple of years after the birth of the daughter named Catrin. The first few stanzas in the first paragraph start off with the setting which is the hot, white hospital room or to be more exact the labor ward inside the hospital. The phrase “I can remember you,” which is repeated twice signifies that it’s a monumental experience in Gillian Clarke’s lifetime to give birth to her daughter Catrin. Another monumental experience in Gillian’s life would be the connectivity by the umbilical cord which also evokes a sense of passion in both the mother and the child, this experience is shown when the author says “our fierce confrontation, the tight red rope of love which we both fought over”. In the same paragraph there is also contrast for example the phrase “wild, tender circles” this is shown as a contrast because of the word wild and tender are placed together which creates an oxymoron, since there are brutality and wildness are shown when giving birth but there’s also tender love involved. Another oxymoron is shown in the second paragraph when the author talks about her daughters “rosey, defiant glare” which shows that her daughter is a strong spirited girl. The second last and last stanza which is “As you ask may you skate in the dark, for one more hour” probably means that the child wants to act and be independent but the mother finds this rebellious act quite dangerous, this shows nature and human nature since animals such as humans and other mammals would care for their young.

To conclude this essay has summarised most parts of the poem and their effects, both poems Catrin by Gillian Clark and Vultures by Chinua Achebe both have reoccurring themes of nature and human nature. Such as how human and their nature act towards their children and young. And how they communicate and act between one and other. So overall both themes of nature and human nature interviews with both poems quite well.

Read more

The Importance of Adapting to Changes in “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Adapting to Change

Cesar Chavez once said, “Preservation of one’s own culture does not require contempt or disrespect for other cultures.” Respecting other cultures is very important if you want to have peace within your own culture. In the book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, Western missionaries introduce new thoughts and beliefs into the Ibo society. The changes that were brought into the Ibo society caused major conflict between the two cultures and eventually led to the downfall of the Ibo culture. Throughout the book, there were several complex relationships. However, the most complex would be the father/son relationship of Okonkwo and Nwoye. When the missionaries arrived, Nwoye gained a sense of belonging and comfort and that allowed him to show his true feelings that he had been holding back. Chinua Achebe used Nwoye to emphasize that changes to a culture can be for the better.

After Nwoye’s conversion, he felt a sense of identity. When Okonkwo murdered Ikemefuna, Nwoye never recovered from his loss of what seemed like a brother. When Nwoye found out what had happened to Ikemefuna, “He did not cry. He just hung limp” (Achebe 65). Nwoye felt overwhelmed with emotions; he felt betrayed by his father for taking part in something so horrific, but he knew that Okonkwo only did it to maintain his reputation of being masculine. He had to keep his abundance of feelings to himself or else he would risk appearing too feminine for his father’s liking. When the Western missionaries brought their culture into the Ibo society, Nwoye realized that he was a better fit for their religion; a religion where he didn’t need to hide his feelings or be forced into making decisions that he knew weren’t ethical.

Although the introduction of the Western culture brought conflict to many people in Nwoye’s life, the missionaries provided Nwoye with an outlet that he could use to release his anger and frustration toward his father and the entire Ibo culture. Nwoye’s fragmented relationship with his father growing up made him feel as if he didn’t belong in the Ibo culture. His childhood was full of terrible memories that turned him into a despondent individual, which was emphasized when Achebe wrote, “At any rate, that was how it looked to his father and he sought to correct him by constant nagging and beating. And so Nwoye was developing into a sad-faced youth” (23). Okonkwo did not tolerate Nwoye’s differences and, consequently, abused his son both emotionally and physically. Nwoye’s father made him feel like an outsider in his own family and, because of that, Nwoye was afraid to be himself starting at a very young age. When Nwoye found out that he would be leaving his home to attend a Christian school, Achebe wrote, “Nwoye did not fully understand. But he was happy to leave his father” (145). The missionaries gave Nwoye a safe haven where he was free to be himself and not withhold any of his emotions out of fear, which was a great relief for him.

Nwoye’s change of character helped shape the book Things Fall Apart as a whole. The missionaries’ arrival sparked lots of curiosity within the tribe. The curiosity of the Ibo people, specifically Nwoye, led to conflict within families and between friends. All of the conflict that the missionaries caused shaped the outcome of the book by emphasizing that change comes with conflict but it can be both beneficial and harmful. For example, when Nwoye started questioning his identity, it caused him to express his feelings to Okonkwo and put a strain on his family, which is shown when Achebe wrote, “Nwoye struggled to free himself from the choking grip [of Okonkwo]” (145). Okonkwo was furious with Nwoye when he had even the slightest suspicion that his son was betraying his culture. While Nwoye benefited from his change in identity, it was perceived in a negative way by his father.

In conclusion, Nwoye’s curiosity and eventual conversion to Christianity shaped the book Things Fall Apart. The conflict between the Western missionaries and the Ibo people brought up many conflicts that threatened the Ibo culture. While Christianity brought a negative impact to some lives, it brought a very positive impact to others. The missionaries allowed Nwoye to finally find a sense of comfort after Ikemefuna’s death and he was also able to find a sense of identity that he never received from the Ibo culture. Although change does cause conflict, it can have a positive impact on those who accept and embrace the change.

Read more

The issue of imperialism in the Dead Men’s Path

June 8, 2021 by Essay Writer

Imagine one day you are enjoying peace amongst your family and a white man forces his way into your place of living, driving you to surrender your social convictions. While he discloses to you that he and his men are better finished than you, yet they are the foreigners. Simply not recognizing what’s in store, in result you end up feeling apprehensive. Presently you feel like the outsider in your own homeland that you’ve known your whole life to be yours. There are a few cases of writing on this theme such as “A Dead Man’s Path” written by Chinua Achebe, considering the measure of history that was being made at the time. English colonization and imperialists greatly influenced the locals by upstarting numerous equipped clashes amongst themselves, forcing new religious practices and making them have to survive horrid life threatening circumstances.

A Dead Men’s Path epitomizes how nations have distinctive beliefs, social convictions and different religions. At the point when the British attacked less developed nations, they craved for complete control over each part of their lives including religion. Locals weren’t as advanced and their nation wasn’t either, not as compared to the British.

A quick summary on “A Dead Man’s Path” to the audience who is not familiar with the story, Michael Obi’s aspiration is satisfied when, at age twenty-six when he is assigned the position of headmaster to a school which is to be considered backwards to most. Obi is said to be a young man who is vigorous and optimistic to say the least, Obi would like to tidy up the school by accelerating its goal of converting them into Christians. Obi hopes to firmly influence a great job of this terrific chance and display to individuals how a school ought to be. Intending to organize present day techniques and request exclusive expectations of educating to the people, while his spouse Nancy supports every choice he makes. Michael Obi plans to lift Ndume School from making retrogressive methods to a position of in which new school revisions will supplement the people of Ndume town’s way of living. Then came one night when Obi finds a villager cutting over the plants that his wife planted on a pathway that connects the sacred burial ground and the town altar. Completely appalled by the lady’s unmitigated invasion of school property, he then arranges the holy genealogical trail to be surrounded by gates with spiked metal tips, much to alarm the villagers that they are not welcome to use his compound as a high way for their religious nonsense.

Read more
Order Creative Sample Now
Choose type of discipline
Choose academic level
  • High school
  • College
  • University
  • Masters
  • PhD

Page count
1 pages
$ 10