An Analytical Essay on Excessive Pride in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart


Length: 886 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Excellent
Open Document
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document



Excessive Pride in Things Fall Apart

 

 

In Chinua Achebe's novel Things Fall Apart, a well-known aphorism, "pride goes before a fall", was used. I agreed with and supported this statement. The story line itself backed up this statement as well. Through Okonkwo's hard work he became a "great man" with a sense of pride and haughtiness, who then suffered a loss of pride, which ultimately led to his down fall and his own suicide.

 

This book went along with the commonly stated cliché. In addition to that, there was a widely known joke that went well with this. "One day there was an airplane pilot flying Bill Clinton, Bill Gates, Bill (a kid), and Billy Gram. Something went wrong with the plane, so it had to be abandoned. The airplane pilot strapped on a parachute and said to them, "there is only four parachutes but I am taking one." Bill Clinton grabbed the second one and said, "I am the most important man and my country needs me so I am taking one too." Then, Bill Gates grabbed the third one and said, "I am the smartest man in the world and my people need me." So, Bill (a kid) was just looking... at the fourth parachute and Billy Gram said to him, "I am an old man and you are young, you have your whole life ahead of you, take the last parachute." Finally, Bill (a kid) looked up at him and said, "I was not thinking about that, it's just that the smartest man in the world took my backpack."

 

As you saw from the book and the joke, both Okonkwo, and Bill Gates were full of prejudice pride. They thought they were "great men", and saw others as inferior to them and incapable of living substantially if they were not the backbone. Okonkwo's pride grew immensely when he was an eighteen-year-old boy growing up in Umuofia. His father, Unoka was a lazy and imprudent man so Okonkwo sought to be everything his father was not. He threw Amalinze the Cat, who was a wily craftsman, and great wrestler that was unbeaten for seven years from Umuofia to Mbaino. That victory made Okonkwo known past the nine villages.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"An Analytical Essay on Excessive Pride in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart." 123HelpMe.com. 20 Sep 2017
    <http://www.123HelpMe.com/view.asp?id=14742>.
Title Length Color Rating  
An Analytical Essay on the Flaws of Okonkwo in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart - The Flaws of Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart "Man, when perfected, is the best of animals, but, when separated from law and justice, he is the worst of all." (Aristotle). In Chinua Achebe's novel Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo is living proof of Aristotle's statement. Although he is arguably the most powerful man in Umuofia, His personal flaws of fear of failure and uncontrollable anger do not allow him true greatness as a human being. Okonkwo is one of the most powerful men in the Ibo tribe....   [tags: Things Fall Apart essays] 1036 words
(3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe Essay - “Tragedy arouses not only pity but also fear…” Things Fall Apart doesn’t tell you what “has” happened it shows you what is going to happen. In Things Fall Apart Chinua Achebe is dramatizing what may happen and what was happening. The District commissioner suggested a book title at the end of the book. I think the book title’s main purpose was to suggest what may happen.”…The Pacification of the Lower Niger Tribes.” A tragedy has a protagonist, the protagonist is someone who is renowned or prosperous, and has a change of fortune from good to bad or vice versa....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1011 words
(2.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Things Fall Apart: Questions and Answers Essay - Q1. Describe Okonkwo, the protagonist of Things Fall Apart. Consider him as an Igbo hero character: How does he achieve greatness and defined by his culture. How does he differ from Western heroes you are familiar with. What are Okwonko’s strengths and weaknesses. Okonkwo embodies all the ideal and heroic traits of the Igbo culture. He is strong, authoritative, hardworking, and successful. The opening sentence states that “Okonkwo was well known throughout the nine villages and even beyond” (3)....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays] 2705 words
(7.7 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart Essay - The classic African literary tale Things Fall Apart, written by Chinua Achebe, is a brilliant account of historical African culture and the destruction colonialism can cause upon such cultures. As the reader follows the narrative and complexity of the characters through the novel, a sense of pride, trust, and faith in history emerges. Yet, with the introduction of colonialism the characters must learn to embrace and adapt to a new culture and set of beliefs or face termination from society. The novel explores the troubles of African cultures and their adaptation to colonialism....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays] 1731 words
(4.9 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Religion in Things Fall Apart Essay - For many people, religion is a very touchy subject. For most, it is a personal decision; people choose a faith that aligns with their beliefs, ideas, and faiths. Although people would like to think that religion is a personal decision, and they can adapt it to how they feel and what they believe, in practice, that is not the case. Religion represents a commitment to a set of principles that are not moldable, adaptable, or flexible. Religion, although it may be a personal belief, it is extremely defined, with little to no room for flexibility....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays]
:: 3 Works Cited
1078 words
(3.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Things Fall Apart - White Missionaries Caused Umofia to Fall Apart Essay - Things Fall Apart - White Missionaries Caused Umofia to Fall Apart       Faith has always been a guiding force in man's life.  Chinua Achebe's novel Things Fall Apart is a story that describes the effects of a new Christian religion in a tribal village of Africa.  The tribe has their own language, known as Obi, a dignified culture and a value system that has continued for many years as they trace back into their ancestry.  Yet, voids that this culture can no longer fill for modern tribesmen enable white missionaries to intrude upon this system and convert many of the tribe's younger members to the Christian faith.  The tribal system falls apart because younger member...   [tags: Things Fall Apart essays]
:: 4 Works Cited
1626 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Cultural Rape in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart Essay - Cultural Rape In Things Fall Apart In Things Fall Apart, Achebe shows the ruthlessness of the missionaries in pursuit of new converts. Domestic support for the missions depended in large measure upon the tangible success of their preaching, 'success' being reflected in the numbers of conversions. This relentless focus on "success" caused the "cultural rape" of the people of Umuofia.             Achebe even hints at their use of bribery and blackmail in their endeavours. He tells us, 'the white missionary had set up a school to teach young Christians to read and write' (126)....   [tags: Things Fall Apart Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1370 words
(3.9 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay about No Tragic Hero in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart - No Tragic Hero in Things Fall Apart     According to Aristotle a tragedy is "a drama...which recounts an important and casually related series of events in the life of a person of significance, such events culminating in an unhappy catastrophe, the whole treated with great dignity and seriousness." The novel Things Fall Apart, written by Chinua Achebe begins as a story about the life of a man named Okonkwo. It recounts the events beginning with his childhood and ending with his death. Part I of the novel is about Okonkwo, his family, and the customs and culture of his clan....   [tags: Things Fall Apart essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
888 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay about An Analysis of Language in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart -      Albert Chinualumogu Achebe was born on November 16, 1930 to Isaiah Okafo and Janet Achebe in the very unstable country of Ogidi, Nigeria. He was exposed to missionaries early in his childhood because Ogidi was one of the first missionary centers established in Eastern Nigeria and his father was an evangelist. Yet it was not until he began to study at the University of Ibadan that Achebe discovered what he himself wanted to do. He had grown apalled to the "superficial picture" of Nigeria that many non-Nigerian authors were providing....   [tags: Things Fall Apart essays] 1464 words
(4.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Irony in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart Essay - Things Fall Apart      That year the harvest was sad, like a funeral, and many farmers wept as they dug up the miserable and rotting yams.  One man tied his cloth to a tree branch and hanged himself.  Okonkwo remembered that tragic year with a cold shiver throughout the rest of his life.  It always surprised him when he thought of it later that he did not sink under the load of despair.  He knew that he was a fierce fighter, but that year had been enough to break the heart of a lion.    "Since I survived that year," he always said, "I shall survive anything."  He put it down to his inflexible will.  His father, Unoka, who was then an ailing man, had said to him during that terrible harve...   [tags: Things Fall Apart essays] 1503 words
(4.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]

Related Searches




Later he had his own house, three wives each with their own house, became a wealthy farmer, and had two barns full of yams. Along with all of that he had two titles, showed an incredible prowess in two inter-tribal wars, and was an egwugwu otherwise called a masked spirit.

 

Yet in the novel A Separate Peace Finny, the all around athletic character, had a lot of things going for him. He was at the peak of his life and nothing could stop him. So because of this invincible attitude Finny never stoped to think about anything, he just pursued it. The result of this was breaking his leg and ending his future dreams. Finny made no backup plans in his life to pursue so he gave up hope. This was just like when Okonkwo gave up on the world around him when things did not go as planed. Soon after, he committed suicide because he saw no future and was unwilling to compromise. Okonkwo and Finny where both blinded by their pride and would not accept reality, which concluded with their own downfall and demise.

 

When Okonkwo was attending the funeral of Ezeudu, a noble warrior with three titles, he lost his pride at sunset when the guns fired their last salute. Okonkwo's gun exploded a piece of iron that killed Ezeudu's sixteen-year-old son. This was a crime against their earth goddess, so he had to flee the country for seven years and his belongings were to be destroyed to cleanse the land. Okonkwo's pride was bruised because he had lost everything he had spent his life saving. Once his seven years were over he went back to and found the his tribe had changed vastly. His people's new beliefs, customs, culture, religion, and society were foreign to him because they adjusted over time to the Christians' ways. His world was literally turned upside-down.

 

Okonkwo's life went downhill from there, like its said in the bible, "Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall." He surrendered to defeat when he found his people were not alongside him in getting the land back to the traditional ways. In Okonkwo's mind it was better to die than to admit his pride had caused the majority of his pain. He was so blinded to his own faults that it magnified the faults of others. This did not allow Okonkwo to see what was coming and how he could have protected himself against the odds.

 

In conclusion, from Okonkwo's unwillingness to accept things that seemed to be beneath him, he ended up beneath them. He had extremely too much pride, which caused his downfall because he became so obsessed with being everything his dad was not. This caused Okonkwo to no longer care whether things were wrong or right. His pride also interfered with his ability to reason. That was why he participated in killing Ikemefuna, his adopted son, so he would not be seen as an efulefu who was to weak to be a man.

 


Return to 123HelpMe.com