How Does Achebe Use His Novel to Combat White Description of Africans as Being Savages?

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To Europeans, Africans are savages or in other words, animals. They are wild and not intelligent. They probably don’t even have a language. These are all the fixes that the white people have put on the Africans. Although, in the novel Things Fall Apart by Achebe, he combats that idea through various examples of stories from the Igbo culture to show that the African people are much more complex than how the Europeans sees them as. From their language to their beliefs, the African people prove to be a real society with real thoughts oppose to the European’s idea of them. One of the first things we are introduced to the Igbo culture and their people is their language. European perceives Africans as people of silence because they would not know how to speak or talk. But instead, Achebe shows us that the people of the Igbo culture speak a very complex language that includes many literary devices. They are also not the wild savages that the white men perceive them as. Compared to Europeans who obtain their status through wealth, the African people obtain in through their skills and abilities. This is why masculinity and respect is highly important in the Igbo culture because through that, one’s status is earned. We are also shown that the culture values harmonious relations and peace. Although, coming with that are also complex laws and customs. These complexity and harmony of the Igbo culture contradicts the Europeans as thinking them as savages. The items such as kola nuts and palm wine are a big example of this concept because whenever one visits a neighbor or has a feast, they go through a process of sharing the kola nut and offering palm wine. For example, Unoka, a man in the society with no respect because he owes so much debt, is approached by one of his neighbor to collect it. Before even mentioning the debt, he offers Unoka a kola nut because of their

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