things fall apart essay

Submitted By sreddy15
Words: 612
Pages: 3

The story takes place in the late 1800s, during the age of Imperialism. Countries in Europe began scrambling for land in Africa in order to gain their natural resources. Europeans believed that all European races were superior to other races and that dominating “weaker” races was just evolution taking place. Many Europeans also viewed Africans as children or savages. The book Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe, shows the complex culture of Africa. The main character Okonkwo is a respected leader and great farmer in his village, Ibo. The purpose of the book is to show how wrong the European views of Africa were. The Ibo people had a civilized and thriving government, economy, and society. The Ibo people had a strong and structured government. Europeans believed that Africans had no government or laws which was not the case. In the Ibo village they had an oligarchy, ruled by the elders of the village (p.). This shows they had a structure in their government, it was not just chaos as believed by europeans. The Clan was not allowed to go to war unless approved by the agbala. (p.12). This shows that were able to keep the peace in a civilized way and were not just savages who fought all the time. The Ibo people and the other clans had trials held by the egwugwu(p88). The egwugwu were the ancestral gods who decided punishments for crimes and settled conflicts. This again shows that the people did not just live in chaos, they had a way to resolve conflicts that worked for them. The government of the Ibo people was well-developed and effective fo resolving issues. The Ibo people had a structured economy. Europeans viewed Africans paternalistically, or as children, and believed africans were simple minded and not capable of money or trading. Their main form of income came from selling crops, specifically yams(p.33). This shows that they were able to support themselves and had a way to make a living. They also had a marketplace for trade. (p. 10). This shows they were able to set up a system to buy and sell goods. The villagers had a set currency, cowries (p4). This shows that not only were they trading but they were using money to do it, which created a modern day money system. The economy of the Ibo people was civilized and complex, not