Achebe Essays

Hopes and Impediments: Selected Essays3.98 · Rating details ·  259 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews

One of the most provocative and original voices in contemporary literature, Chinua Achebe here considers the place of literature and art in our society in a collection of essays spanning his best writing and lectures from the last twenty-three years. For Achebe, overcoming Eurocentrism goes hand in hand with eradicating the destructive effects of racism and injustice in WeOne of the most provocative and original voices in contemporary literature, Chinua Achebe here considers the place of literature and art in our society in a collection of essays spanning his best writing and lectures from the last twenty-three years. For Achebe, overcoming Eurocentrism goes hand in hand with eradicating the destructive effects of racism and injustice in Western society. He reveals the impediments that still stand in the way of open, equal dialogue between Africans and Europeans, between blacks and whites, but also instills us with hope that they will soon be overcome....more

Paperback, 208 pages

Published September 1st 1990 by Anchor (first published 1988)

Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe Essay

1357 Words6 Pages

In the novel, Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe, women play the roles of oppressed homemakers that are perceived as weak and defenseless second-class citizens, as the educators of children, and as spiritual leaders in traditional Ibo culture. Through the life of Okonwo, the main character of Things Fall Apart, the roles of women in traditional Ibo culture are presented through various events that take place in the village of Umuofia. In traditional Ibo culture, women were to stay at home and tend to her husbands’ needs and satisfy them. Women were viewed as property of their fathers and were then sold to the suitor that was willing to pay her bride-price. A woman had no identity of her own, the status and position of her husband defined…show more content…

The other wives were very much afraid of Okonwo but they knew better than to challenge his authority. Neither of the wives dared to interfere between an occasional and tentative, “It is enough Okonwo “, pleaded from a reasonable distance (38). Okonwo even attempts to shoot Ekwefi when she referred to him as one of those “guns that never shot.” The novel describes a third instance of wife beating, when a severe case of wife beating comes before the egwugwu, they found in favor of the beaten wife, but at the end of the trial an elder wondered,” Why such a trifle should come before the egwugwu?”(94). All these occurrences demonstrate that women are oppressed and are treated like inferior, worthless properties that deserved to be beaten now and then in traditional Ibo culture. The Ibo believe that women are weak in every aspect of life. Men insult each other by calling each other women. An example of this is Okonwo’s deep hatred and resentment for his father, Unoka, whom he considered a woman because of his carelessness to rank high in status among the Ibo, for his laziness, and him being an untitled man. In a kindred meeting of his peers, Okonwo unkindly tells Osugo, the man who had contradicted him in the meeting, “This meeting is for men” (26). Since Osugo has taken no title, Okonwo considers him a woman. Okonwo perceives women as being weak and does not want to appear weak or like a woman among the Ibo. After murdering Ikemefuna,

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