Okonkwo Tragic Hero Analysis

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A tragic hero is a term that describes a character who displays certain characteristics which affect their future significantly. In Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe, Okonkwo’s fate as a tragic hero to an extent is greatly true as he portrays hamartia, a fatal flaw, and hubris, excessive pride. Even though the author describes Okonkwo as a hardworking, African farmer, it contradicts his rash decisions following numerous events. Therefore, Okonkwo’s tragedy is true as his fear of weakness and excessive pride lead him to his downfall. Even though Achebe sets Okonkwo to his downfall, it is evident that Okonkwo is a great hero despite his rash behavior and temper. Generally, a tragic hero is born into royalty and has already attained the noble status. However, Okonkwo was born into a poor family, and according to Okonkwo his father was “weak and feminine”. Regardless his father’s failures Okonkwo acquires respect in the Igbo society by defeating a great wrestler: As a young man of eighteen he had brought honor to his village by throwing Amalinze the Cat. (1) Okonkwo furthermore spends his hours toiling away in an attempt to earn his way up in the patriarchal society. Eventually, after numerous hardships, Okonkwo earns his success and obtains several barns and wives. This symbolizes wealth and power which were what Okonkwo had been working for all his life. Moreover, Achebe portrays Okonkwo as a fierce warrior and is also represents him as a model clansman in the society:

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