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Word Count: 725
Chinua Achebes Things Fall Apart deals with societal changes and how they affect individuals Resistance to change and the harm such resistance does to people collectively serve as the novels theme To support this theme Achebe relies heavily on characterization constantly focusing on how Okonkwos stubbornness slowly destroys him The author also concentrates on two separate conflicts that between Okonkwo and the changes occurring around him and that between the Umuofia clan and the Christian missionaries who come to the village Under attack by the missionaries the traditional values of Okonkwos people undergo changes throughout the book further highlighting the themes relevance to Okonkwo Achebe covers great territory over theme characterization conflict and values in a proverb spoken by Okonkwos uncle Uchendu There is no story that is not true The world has no end and what is good among one people is an abomination with others 130 This line elucidates Achebes theme by depicting the world as having no end and thus eternally progressing from the past to the future In the beginning of the novel Okonkwos father Unoka clearly expresses the view that humans have to embrace change in order to appreciate its potential benefits Our elders say that the sun will shine on those who stand before it shines on those who kneel under them 11 Okonkwo is one of those who kneel under them refusing to adapt and absorb the sunlight To him the change Mr Brown and the missionaries bring with them is not good but rather an abomination In addition to clarifying Achebes theme Uchendus words sharpen his characters and give them distinction When Uchendu says what is good among one people his words possess a very clear connection to the Christian faith and its appeal to the more malleable members of the Umuofia clan He himself displays a considerable level of objectivity for the duration of his involvement with Okonkwos life that he
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