Parent-Child Relationships In Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart

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Parent-Child Relations in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart There are many different types and examples of relationships between the characters of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart; husband and wife, neighbors, neighboring villages, village and outsiders. More than any of those, the relationships between children and their parents are the most impactful in this story. These relationships, specifically between Okonkwo and his father and Okonkwo and his children, help shape the characters by showing who they are in secret and who they appear to be to the rest of the world. These relationships also provide a driving force that helps bring the story to its somber conclusion. The relationship between Okonkwo and his father, perhaps the most important relationship in the story, is one based on hate and contempt. Unoka was “lazy and improvident and quite incapable of thinking about tomorrow” (4). He was well known throughout their village as a loafer who borrowed money and…show more content…
He is thought to be lazy and weak and does not live up to the expectations that his father has for him as his oldest son. Okonkwo’s biggest problem with his son is that he is reminiscent of Okonkwo’s father. After the arrival of Ikemefuna, Okonkwo began to see positive changes in his son. He began to adopt more manly attitudes giving Okonkwo hope for him. “He wanted Nwoye to grow into tough young man capable of ruling his father’s household when he was dead and gone to join the ancestors” (52). Okonkwo continued to push his son towards being more masculine, but after the death of Ikemefuna, Nwoye strays as far as possible from what his father thinks to be the right path. Nwoye had become afraid of his father and it pushes him to join the missionaries after their family is exiled, perhaps the most feminine thing his father can imagine. The rift between them is so great that Nwoye tells Obierika, “He is not my father”
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