Okonkwo Cultural Change Analysis

938 Words4 Pages
Nwoye’s Response To Cultural Change
A sense of identity is often acquired and developed by everyone as they mature, but it is always changing as the culture changes. The novel, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, follows the development of several characters in response to a cultural shock caused by the Westernization of the Ibo tribe in Nigeria. The protagonist of the book, Okonkwo, is a strong leader and warrior of the tribe who was obsessed with his masculine image. However, Okonkwo’s eldest son, Nwoye, tries to shadow and please his father, but ultimately fails for he has a soft side. Especially when it comes to religion, Nwoye’s believes, morals, and interests often diverse from his fathers. The introduction of Christianity to the Ibo
…show more content…
Christianity turned Nwoye’s life around. He broke apart from the Ibo cultural norms, and became a part of a religion with morals and believes he agreed with. Furthermore, Nwoye was sent to a college to get educated. When Obierika confronted Nwoye about why he was with the missionaries, Nwoye replied: "I am one of them" (), showing that his perspective on religion has changed for the better, based on his own morals, and not the clan’s or his fathers. Okonkwo, however, didn’t approve of Nwoye’s religion change. Everything Nwoye thought was morally right contradicted his fathers believes, so Okonkwo completely disowned his son and cut all ties after attempting to kill him. As a result, Nwoye moved in with the Christians and was able to escape his father 's abuse and controlling attitude. He was also able to escape from a faith that didn’t support his morals.

Conclusion: How did the character develop
Although much of the Ibo population reacted negatively to the forced Westernization of Nigeria, a number of people, such as Nwoye, accepted and benefited from the new religion. Nwoye’s development throughout Things Fall Apart in response to the cultural collision and the introduction of a new religion contribute to the profound theme of change.
As culture changes, things fall apart for some individuals who are not willing to accept change. However, sometimes a change in culture can provide
Open Document