In because it is the complete opposite of how

In the novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, the main character’s name is Okonkwo. He is living whole life in fear of being like this father. He resents his father greatly for the way his father lived his life. Okonkwo grew up with a lazy father named Unoka. During Okonkwo’s childhood, Unoka owed a lot of money to a lot of people but never had the real intention of giving it back. He played his flute a lot and loved music. He didn’t even own a barn for yams and his crops were always bad. Okonkwo grew up as a fighter. He wrestled the strongest man in the village and won. He is now known as a great warrior in his tribe. But his father never did anything that great. His father would rather make small sacrifices to his god and hope his crops are good when he won’t do all the hard work than actually work. Okonkwo does everything in his power to not be like his father. “Okonkwo rules his household with a heavy hand. His wives, especially the youngest, live in perpetual fear of his fiery temper, and so did his little children” (13) He does this because it is the complete opposite of how his father treated how his father treated wives, , siblings, and himself. “But his whole life was dominated by fear, the fear of failure and weakness. It was deeper and more intimate than the fear of evil and capricious gods and of magic…. Okonkwo’s fear was great then these. It was not external but lay deep within himself. It was the fear of himself, lest he will be found to resemble his father” (13).Okonkwo fears becoming like his father even when his son Nwoye starts to act lazy. “Nwoye…was already causing his father great anxiety for his incipient laziness… and he sought to correct him by constant nagging and beating” (13). Okonkwo does everything in his power to build up wealth and his property shows. “He has a large compound enclosed by a thick wall of red earth. His own hut stands immediately behind the only gate in the red walls. Each of his three wives had her own hut…” (14). Okonkwo wants to show his wealth and he has three wives and eight children The more wives and children they have, the wealthier they look and are. Okonkwo does not want to be like his father in anything. “He did not inherit a barn from his father. There was no barn to inherit” (14). Most young meant inherited a barn from their fathers because that showed how hard a worker the father was and how well off each family was. When Ikemefuna arrives to stay with Okonkwo, Ikemefuna begins to grow on Okonkwo. Okonkwo becomes fond of the boy but doesn’t show his emotions. He keeps it locked away. “To show affection was a sign of weakness; the only thing worth demonstrating was strength” (28). This is what Okonkwo believes if the right way to go about his life because his father showed emotions and affection and that made him weak. Okonkwo is very hard on Nwoye because even though Nwoye is still a little young, Okonkwo believes that it is not too early to begin to learn how to be a man and farm. “He will stamp out the disquieting signs of laziness which he thinks he already sees in him” (33). Okonkwo has a really bad temper and he will go from being happy to angry in a matter of seconds. Okonkwo gets angry because he believes a banana tree is dead but it is still alive and he beats his second wife and leaves her and her only daughter crying. His wife murmurs something about guns that never shoot and Okonkwo hears that and gets angry. He aims the gun at his wife and pulls the trigger. Luckily she scrambled over a wall in time without being shot. The clan decides that it is time to kill Ikemefuna and so Okonkwo goes along the trip without telling Ikemefuna anything. Suddenly the clansmen stop and turn and deliver a deadly blow with a machete to Ikemefuna. Okonkwo is afraid of being considered weak and so when Ikemefuna runs towards him, he delivers the death blow to Ikemefuna and kills him. For two days Okonkwo didn’t eat. He becomes very depressed and shocked that he killed Ikemefuna. After the white men arrive in Umuofia and destroy their cultures and torture its people, Okonkwo decides he has had enough and wants revenge. Five messenger arrive during a city meeting and Okonkwo beheads one of them. He then disappears to his home because his clan didn’t back him up and let the whites escape. This is where he hangs himself in a tree in his yard. Okonkwo lived in great fear of being like his father. This drove him to do many things that people today would never be proud of. This fear of being weak eventually drives Okonkwo to the edge and Okonkwo kills himself to get away from it all. Okonkwo does everything his father did not. His fear controlled his whole life and brought him sadness and makes him depressed. Fear of becoming like his father is a big problem to deal with alone.


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