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okonkwo is a victimb in things fall apart

Uploaded by Luthien930 on Mar 03, 2004

Have you ever been a victim of your own actions? In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo ultimately becomes a victim of fate. Okonkwo, the proud, fearless, strong warrior has the unfortunate burden to witness the death of his “adopted” son, Ikemefuna. Although warned not to appear in the execution, Okonkwo nevertheless comes to the execution and consequently gives the killing blow to Ikemefuna. In Things Fall Apart, one of the most important tones is irony, which plays itself in the story making Okonkwo a victim of death and his destiny.
"Okonkwo was ruled by one passion--to hate everything his father Unoka had loved." (17). And he has. He was a great warrior before he became an adult and he seems to have the successful life. But in this book, everything plays itself out. He worked too hard not to become his father and became too harsh and cruel, which would later prove to a misfortune to him. He only killed Ikemefuna to prove to Umuofia that he wasn’t weak and passionate. The death of Ikemefuna may have been the biggest mistake to Okonkwo. Because of Ikemefuna’s death, Nwoye has found himself a changed man disobeying his father, with a breach in his life for new beginnings. This disobedience, caused Nwoye to convert to Christianity, leaving Okonkwo the son he feared would become like Unoka.
The fact that Okonkwo had killed someone who had called him father shows that Okonkwo was a man who cared more about his reputation than someone’s life. It was ironic that Okonkwo is cumbersome with a gun, but his exile from Umuofia was a complete accident that reflected from his good shot. It shows that Okonkwo can also be victimized as a man of guilt. He was guilty for betrayal of his son, the life of Ikemefuna, the court messenger, and in a sense, his own life.
As it was said in the book: “When a man says yes, his chi says yes also.” (29) Apparently Okonkwo said yes strongly enough, but his chi was not awake enough to guide him through his wanted destiny. We see Okonkwo’s victimization by his misfortune and bad karma: first with his son, then with his homecoming to Umuofia, and the effacement of Umuofia society by the white men. With all these dilemmas, Okonkwo had no choice but to relinquish himself from the world, resulting in his death.

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Uploaded by:   Luthien930

Date:   03/03/2004

Category:   Literature

Length:   2 pages (396 words)

Views:   5277

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