Okonkwo's Fear

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Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe is a brilliant novel because of its description of Okonkwo’s fall from prominence. However, even though Okonkwo was a brilliant wrestler, he hated the sullen life of his father, a man who had many debts throughout his life. As a father, Okonkwo fears that his son, Nwoye, is not masculine enough to become successful in the clan. Fear is a recurring theme in the novel, and it plays a gigantic role in Okonkwo’s death. In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo’s fear is the driving force behind many of his actions, including his own death. In the novel, Okonkwo’s fear of becoming like his father drives him to become the polar opposite of Unoka: emotionally hardened and distant. This is truly displayed in his hate for all things seemingly meek and calm, as the narrator explains, “Even as a little boy he resented his father’s failure and weakness, and even now he still remembered how he had suffered when a playmate told him that his father was agbala...And so Okonkwo was ruled by one passion-to hate everything that his…show more content…
When his father turned out to be a pauper who was in large debt, Okonkwo saw everything that Unoka loved as weakness, leading to a lack of these qualities. As Nwoye started to visit the missionaries in Umuofia, Okonkwo began to fear that the new religion was bringing out the more emotional side in his son. In a desperate attempt to stop Nwoye’s fascination, Okonkwo beat him, which only damaged their relationship even more. When the missionaries sent messengers to break up a meeting of the clan, Okonkwo killed one of them. However, no one rallied to his side, and the great warrior killed himself to avoid the punishment. Okonkwo fears a plethora of situations and people during this book, and all of them contribute to his ultimate downfall, and was even a catalyst in his
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