Sunday, January 2, 2011

Things Fall Apart

by Chinua Achebe

I have been trying to read this book for several years and assigned it to my AP Human Geography class, which forced me to finally sit down and read it.  Upon finishing it, I wonder what took me so long.  Achebe's writing style leaves room for the reader to draw their own conclusions and fill in the blanks in many instances.  Hallmarked as one of the first African books really about Africa, it gives great insight into life in African villages before the arrival of the white man and colonization.  I found myself drawn into the symbiotic relationship between the Ibo and their natural surroundings.  Everything had a reason, a purpose and a story.  When the white man came and destroyed this relationship, I found myself more than just a little bit ashamed of my ancestors. 

I viewed the main character, Okonkwo, as a tragic hero in this novel.  He achieves so much - building a successul farm, becoming a great warrior, marrying 3 wives, earning many village titles, but he also loses a great deal culminating in the losses of his son, his culture and belief in his fellow man.  For Okonkwo, his Ibo people and Africa, things truly did fall apart in this novel.

Rating - B

1 comment:

  1. I think I'll have to read this book,too, at some point. Probably 2012. Heck, it could be 2013 at the rate I'm giong. LOL.

    I absolutely LOVE your blog. I'm following now so I can read old posts and keep up with future ones.