Who Is Nwoye's Identity In Things Fall Apart

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From the moment we are born, most if not all parents truly want the best for their kids. Some have ways of guiding us through life in manners which seem too harsh meanwhile others can easily pour out their love. As a kid continues to grow, certain influences and factors are constantly altering their viewpoints, beliefs, ethics, morals and values. This motif is seen in Chinua Achebe’s novel, Things Fall Apart, with Okonkwo, the protagonist character having a tight clamp around his son, Nwoye. Nwoye is a deeply troubled lad –not understanding certain aspects of his culture, constantly trying to satisfy his father, internally baffling with his identity and who is to become. To many cultures in world history, the arrival of European settlers was…show more content…
However, few feel it is due to European settlers that their country/nation was able to develop and advance. Many also give credit to the beliefs (politically and religiously), trade system(s), centralized government and innovations Europeans brought with them. Similarly, in Things Fall Apart, Achebe uses Nwoye’s character to demonstrate how the arrival of Europeans made an influence on certain people which resulted a shift with their identity, beliefs/values and culture. Before the arrival of European missionaries, Achebe establishes Nwoye’s internal conflicts he has within his culture which takes a toll on his personal identity. In Okonkwo’s eyes, he has begotten an effeminate son just like “roaring flames begets cold, impotent ash” (Achebe 147). To Okonkwo, Nwoye resembles nothing like him and instead takes after the qualities…show more content…
Due to having a difficult childhood, Okonkwo credits his fame to hard work, discipline and determination. To him, the gods did not play a large role in aiding him to become the stable man he is. This has a second-hand effect on his son because he does not embed the importance of making sacrifices or devotions to the gods as much as he does with Nwoye’s non-existent masculinity. Upon arriving in Umuofia, the missionaries waste no time preaching the concept of Christianity and the Holy Trinity. This creates a clash with the villagers who were already deep-rooted within their polytheistic faith. Nwoye, on the contrary, has been captivated by a hymn of the new faith because it “answered a vague and persistent question that haunted his young soul –the question of the crying twins and why Ikemefuna was killed” (Achebe141). The lack of religious influence from his father further cements Nwoye’s struggles to fit within his culture and causes him to be one of the few early converts to the new faith. Despite the tension between him and his father, Nwoye is not at fault. All his life, he has been suppressed by his father –the man who was to guide him through life, be there for moral and emotional support and most importantly, answer the curious questions which arose from the growing teen’s mind. Instead, Nwoye grew up repeating similar steps to his father by bottling up his emotions and his true
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