Character Analysis Okonkwo

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Leeann Kolher/Meier Theme Period 1 13 December 2011 Character Analyst: Okonkwo All people have defining characterizes about themselves. The book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe follows Okonkwo, a village leader who one of the most powerful men in Umuofia. Okonkwo’s defining characterizes are that he is diligent, stubborn and narcissistic. Okonkwo shows this though his words and actions in the novel. Okonkwo feels ashamed of his father, Unoka and, fears becoming like him. Unoka was a careless, lazy, poor and gentle man. He was more interested in music and conversation rather than doing work or improving himself. Okonkwo rejects everything that he believes his father stood for. Okonkwo adopts opposite ideals of his father. In doing so, he becomes productive and wealthy. Okonkwo achieves social and financial success by embracing these cherished ideals; he marries three woman and fathers many children. Okonkwo will do anything to avoid ending up like his father, even if that means doing something he does not want to do. “He heard Ikemefuna cry, ’My father, they have to kill me!’ as he ran towards him. Dazed with fear, Okonkwo drew his machete and cut him down” (Achebe 61). Okonkwo kills his son, because he is afraid of being seen as weak. To the villages he is perceived as brave and ruthless. But what the villagers do not know is that he never wanted to kills his son. In fact, he feels horrible about it. Okonkwo falls into a deep depression some days after Ikemefuna’s death. Okonkwo and Unoka are truly polar opposites. However, just like his father, Okonkwo is always at odds with the values of the people of the village. Okonkwo feels it is difficult to adapt to the changes in his village as the white men come to live among the Igbo people. He finds it very hard to accept the ideas of the white men and, at first he refuses to. He realizes that he
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