Things Fall Apart Suggested Essay Topics - BepalInfo

Things Fall Apart Suggested Essay Topics

זה קצת מביך, לא?

נראה שלא הצלחנו למצוא את מה שחיפשת. ייתכן שביצוע חיפוש יסייע.

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Things Fall Apart Essay Questions

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In this lesson, we will examine some essay topics for Chinua Achebe’s famous book ‘Things Fall Apart.’ These topics will be organized by theme to help you organize concepts and ideas for your students.

Historical Background

Acclaimed Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe’s classic post-colonial novel Things Fall Apart was first published in 1958, and met with worldwide praise. It portrays late 19th-century Nigeria and the struggle between the colonialists and the local traditions of the native societies.

Things Fall Apart is commonly regarded as the novel that opened the door for African literature’s worldwide acceptance, and has been a staple in school curricula across continents. It has also been subject to much critique and analysis, so let’s join that crowd and take a closer look at this classic work by considering a series of theme-based essay questions.

Symbolism

  • Consider the role of weather in Things Fall Apart. Discuss its importance both physically and symbolically, and its emotional and spiritual impact. Compare its influence to other themes in the novel, such as religion.
  • Discuss the significance of silence in Things Fall Apart. Consider the fact that most of the novel is filled with the sounds of music, drums, and people, such as the town crier. Examine whether silence is good or evil, remembering how Unkoa takes his flute with him when he goes to the evil forest.
  • Discuss the symbolism Achebe uses in Things Fall Apart. In doing so, consider the culture of the Igbo society as portrayed in the book, and the characters who live therein, as well as other factors which directly impact the Igbo people.

Culture and Tradition

  • Examine the folktales the clan members tell each other in Things Fall Apart. Discuss their significance, especially of the imagery used in those tales, and what they tells us about the Igbo culture.
  • Discuss the price Okonkwo pays for putting too much emphasis on machismo and strength. Compare and contrast this to our modern society, and whether or not the same price is paid today for similar attitudes.
  • Examine the importance of titles and status in Things Fall Apart. Compare and contrast the value put on status symbols in Igbo culture with today, and how those values impact people’s lives.
  • Discuss the cultural values shared by both the natives and the colonizers in Things Fall Apart. Who benefits more from these similarities? How would have things been different if the native tribes and the colonizers had had nothing in common with each other?
  • Analyze the character of Okonkwo in Things Fall Apart, and discuss whether or not he can be considered a tragic hero. Consider his seven-year exile for an accidental shooting, as well as his status and character traits.
  • Discuss the changes the Igbo society undergoes during the course of Things Fall Apart. Examine how three successive generations of men, Unoka, Okonkwo, and Nwoye, are affected by those changes in their lifetime.

Relationships

  • Discuss the role of women in Things Fall Apart, specifically their impact on Okonkwo’s life. Talk about whether or not the women’s impact on his life changes Okonkwo’s views on femininity and his grasp of the concept of womanhood.
  • Examine the generational father-son relationships in Things Fall Apart. Discuss how Okonkwo’s and Nwoye are shaped by their father’s character traits. What makes them who they are?

Colonization and Race

  • Discuss how the missionaries’ promotion of Christianity in Things Fall Apart both helps and hurts the native society. Consider the role religion plays in our world today, and compare and contrast its benefits and harms with Achebe’s Igbo community.
  • Examine how Chinua Achebe combats the colonialist stereotypes about Africa and its natives. Discuss the aspects of the book which accomplish this, as well as hurdles faced by those aspects.
  • Discuss the symbolic attributes of the District Commissioner, and what those attributes symbolize. Explain how his ideas and actions contribute to the outcome of Things Fall Apart, and the reasons behind his embodiment of such ideas.


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Things Fall Apart Study Guide

6 chapters |
93 lessons

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Ch 1. Things Fall Apart Historical &…

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    Things Fall Apart Historical & Literary Context

Ch 2. Things Fall Apart Literary Devices…

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    Things Fall Apart Literary Devices & Analysis

Ch 3. Things Fall Apart Symbols,…

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    Things Fall Apart Symbols, Symbolism & Setting

Ch 4. Things Fall Apart Character…

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    Things Fall Apart Character Analysis

Ch 5. Things Fall Apart Chapter…

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    Things Fall Apart Chapter Summaries

Ch 6. Teaching Things Fall Apart

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