Characters in Chinua Achebe’s Books Essay


Chinua Achebe shows the usage. particularly. African values and attitudes through his characters in his novel. Things Fall Apart. Okonkwo is an ideal Ibo adult male who achieves wealth and celebrity out of nil. but this causes him to be conceited and contemptuous of less successful. Pride is a baronial quality that adult male should hold. but sometimes. when the beginning of that pride is fear and insecurity alternatively of true religion in oneself. pride could be destructive. In the book. Chinua Achebe uses the direct word picture. character duologue and foil to uncover how Okonkwos incorrigible pride led him to his ain devastation.

First of all. Achebe uses direct remarks from the storyteller to depict Okonkwos ideas and action so that the writer would efficaciously demo his characters proud nature. When Okonkwo returns from the expatriate. the storyteller tells the readers about his program in item that he says Even in his first twelvemonth in expatriate he had begun to be after for his return. The first thing he would make would be to reconstruct his compound on a more brilliant graduated table. Then he would demo his wealth by originating his boies into the Ozo society. Merely the truly great work forces in the kin were able to make this. Okonkwo saw clearly the high regard in which he would be held. and saw himself taking the highest rubric in the land ( Achebe 172 ) .

When Okonkwo was exiled. he had a difficult clip because he had to get down a new life while he already became old and non every bit strong as earlier. The storyteller shows that even though Okonkwo had difficult clip to accommodate himself in Mbanta. he still wanted to demo people that he is a successful adult male. This shows his proud nature that the storyteller illustrates Okonkwo non merely desires to uncover his accomplishment to affect other people but besides tries to recover his power in the society. By utilizing the method of direct word picture. the readers can precisely see the traits of a character and what is traveling on in his head without construing. In this instance. the storytellers direct remarks of Okonkwos ideas and action efficaciously demo his inveterate pride that he ever wants to demo off his success.

Second. Achebe uses Unoka as the foil to beef up Okonkwos character ; his submission is contradictory to Okonkwos brash and chesty pride. Unlike Okonkwo. his male parent. Unoka. is a peaceable. friendly but lazy adult male who was considered to be a failure by the Ibo society. Okonkwo is really ashamed of and disgusted at him ; I have done my best to do Nwoye turn into a adult male. but there is excessively much of his female parent in him. excessively much of his gramps. Obierika thought. but he did non state it. The same idea besides came to Okonkwos head. But he had long learned how to put that shade. Whenever the idea of his male parents failing and failure troubled him he expelled it by believing about his ain strength and success.

And so he did now. His head went to his latest show of manfulness. ( Achebe 66 ) . Okonkwos abomination of his male parent strengthens his intractable pride because this reflects that Okonkwo sees himself as a successful adult male but his male parent as a failure. Furthermore. his fright of resembling his male parent caused him to stand against his male parents trait including gradualness and humbleness. Therefore. by comparing two opposite characters. Achebe non merely exaggerates Okonkwos brash and chesty pride but besides explains the ground behind every bit good.

Last. through emphasized duologue. Achebe farther strengthens his description of Okonkwos difficult. sometimes deformed. and frequently destructive. pride. After the decease of Ikemefuna. Okonkwo is still bothered by it that he says When did you go a shaky old adult female. Okonkwo asked himself. you. who are known in all the nine small towns for your heroism in war? How can a adult male who has killed five work forces in conflict autumn to pieces because he has added a male child to their figure? Okonkwo. you have become a adult female so. ( Achebe 65 ) . Okonkwo is stating himself that he has turned into a “woman”- significance soft-hearted and emotional. and he feels ashamed.

Through this soliloquy. Achebe lets the reader understand more of Okonkwo’s manner of thought. He evidently thinks that a adult male should merely be strong and unemotional. and he measures a man’s sense of pride by his ability in conflict and stamina of his bosom. Since his pride is non from the true assurance of himself. but from the fright of non being what he thinks about an ideal adult male. it is twisted- incorrect. destructive. Achebes first-class usage of duologue shows Okonkwos distorted pride that the readers can link that it would finally take to his ruin.

Ultimately. Okonkwos chronic pride led him to decease that at the terminal of the novel he commits suicide. He finds himself unable to see his falling and
failing and adapt to altering society that he could non play an of import function any longer due to the reaching of the white work forces. Okonkwo is a memorable character as he shows true to life strengths and true to life defects. Through Achebes first-class usage of direct method of word picture. effectual usage of foil and his robust duologues. the reader non merely sees Okonkwos character. but understands it every bit good.

Achebe. Chinua. Things Fall Apart: A Novel. New York: Broadway Books. 1994.