“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.” (Angelou) The white missionaries coming to the igbo tribe really pushes the tribe’s unity to the limit. In Achebe’s book Things Fall Apart the Igbo tribe goes through many trials with change. Okonkwo is having an internal battle with himself while everything around is changing around him. Everyone he assumed wouldn’t change had adjusted their mind-set, and no one agrees with him in his violent approach to get rid of the white missionaries.
Okonkwo was not able to accept what his fate would be if he lived. He knew he would have died when prosecuted by the district commissioner, and Okonkwo could not stand the thought of white men integrating into his own culture and so he decided his own fate. He “was one of the greatest men in Umuofia” (Achebe #208). However, this great man knowling took his own life, which is against their culture so that he may decide his fate by his own hands, and not by the hands of somebody
In Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, the tribal members are confused by the triumph of the white missionaries in their country and are fearful not of what they offer, but what they do not yet understand. The people of the African tribes were naïve of the white man’s true intentions with their land. The white men seemed disinterested in tribal affairs upon their arrival, and the “clan had assumed that [they] would not survive” (Line 1 Achebe). Although, it is these thoughts that foreshadow the eventual demise of the tribal members, and even greater, the whole of African freedom. The rest of the book from this point forward slowly led to the overtaking of the white men and the misunderstanding of the African tribes.
Okonkwo Falls Apart Chinua Achebe offers a rare look at the natives perspective during colonialism in his work Things Fall Apart. The central struggle in the main character Okonkwo is that he is beginning to lose his way of life, and he is not able to do anything about it. Conflicts in religious beliefs with the arrival of the missionaries heightens Okonkwo 's internal aggression, and his inability to adapt leads to his downfall. Because the missionaries do not respect the Igbo religion, tension in villagers like Okonkwo increases. Once the white missionaries arrive in the village of Igbo they immediately start criticizing the natives religion.
Consequently, Okonkwo tried to encourage the thought of war between the clan members but was unsuccessful in all his attempts. Thus he tried his last attempt to save his tribe from the colonization of the Europeans which was to kill the court messenger who belonged to the Christians, "Okonkwo’s machete descended twice and the man 's head lay beside his uniformed body." Okonkwo killed the man to symbolize the starting of the war. However the men who were getting rallied up to start war against the Europeans made no attempts to kill the other messengers, "He knew that Umuofia would not go to war. They had broken into tumult instead of action."
But out of fear that he would be like his father, he started becoming very irresponsible and did things without thinking. He was feared by many and loved by many as well which made him become a very respected member in his tribe. Eventually he could not stand watching his village change its morals and become modernized so he took his own life. His eagerness to stay original and fear of change become his own demise. If it were not for Umuofia 's geography, I believe that this story would have never even taken place.
This is exactly what happened to Obierika when the colonists came, when he did nothing besides prove that just thinking about things won’t change anything. Obierika had multiple moral qualms about his native Igbo culture. They would kill or exile innocent people in the name of pleasing their land’s gods. This first showed when Okonkwo, his best friend, asked Obierika why he had not come along to kill Ikemefuna, the sacrifice boy from another village. “Because I did not want to….
It was a tragic loss for the village. While at the funeral of Ogbeuefi Ezeudu, Okonkwo’s gun went off and killed Ogbeuefi son. His son was a British messenger and killing someone with his occupation was a crime. Consequently, him and his family had to be exiled. He wanted to defeat the British in every way but he had lost the support and respect of his clansman because of his actions.
Europeans unknowingly brought over diseases with them causing epidemics and a huge depopulation among the Native Americans. Because during this time the causes of the diseases was unknown amongst the Europeans and the Native Americans they both thought it was because of their respective religions. The Native Americans believed that manitou was punishing them and the Europeans thought that God was rewarding them. The Native Americans believed that the diseases killing them off was the result of their misuse of manitou. The diseases also undermined the authority of the Native American leaders; the leaders lost the respect of their people because they could no longer keep their people from dying, this forced them into mourning wars.
People of Uruk complain about the nature of Gilgamesh’ tyranny to gods as they can no longer tolerate the king’s unjust behaviors: “His companions are kept on their feet by his contests, [the young men of Uruk] he harries without warrant. Gilgamesh lets no son go free to his father, by day and by [night his tyranny grows] harsher. (Gilgamesh, I.166-170)” People rely on the king to protect their rights and the country, but Gilgamesh does the opposite by taking away their sons and daughters for his personal needs. The people of Uruk feel oppressed under Gilgamesh’s rule as Gilgamesh gives himself the right to sleep with women on the first night of marriage and to take away sons from the household to appease his appetite for war games. Instead of feeling safe under a divine ruler, people feel threatened and pray to gods to protect them.