Things Fall Apart: The Loss Of A Tribe's Livelihood



In Things Fall Apart we witnessed the destruction of a traditional native culture. More specifically we witnessed the challenge and weakening of Igbo spirituality, as well as the death of the tribe's livelihood. The apparent cause can be found in a seemingly good intended mission acting as a gateway for the intrusion of a foreign government, and its quest to conquer and domesticate a self-sustaining, prosperous culture. Although the Igbo downfall was caused primarily by the invasion of "Christian missionaries," their own religious doctrine and passivity played a significant role in allowing the initial infiltration of an alien religion, and the final dissolution of a once prosperous ...

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led by the arrival of the Christian mission. Second, this mission acted as a channel to allow a new government to infiltrate Umuofia and challenge the laws and customs that held together the former Igbo way of life.
Igbo spirituality weakened in two waves. First Christianity provided answers that the inhabitants of Umuofia and Mbanta were seeking. At the end of Part One Obierika's thoughts are expressed:
Obierika was a man who thought about things. When the will of the goddess had been done, he sat in his obi and mourned his friend's calamity. Why should a man suffer so grievously for an offense he had committed inadvertently? But although he thought for a long time he found no answer. He was merely led into greater complexities. He remembered his wife's twin children, whom he had thrown away. What crime had they committed? (TFA 87).
The timing of this passage falls in between a thorough account of Igbo customs and the conversion of many Igbo people to Christianity. This transition ...

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The First day passed and the second and the third and the fourth, and none of them died. Everyone was puzzled. And then it became known that the white man's fetish had unbelievable power. (TFA 105-6)
Clearly this strengthened the credibility of the new white men and their religion. Furthermore, a major blow was dealt to Igbo religion. Christianity provided an answer to the questions people were feeling about their spirituality: the Igbo religion appeared to be false by default; this is how Igbo spirituality fell apart. The new religion's validity and acceptance, coupled with the void created by the dissolution of Igbo spirituality, left the remaining Igbo believers overpowered by the ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 4/27/2008 06:48:46 AM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1550
Pages: 6

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