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Did You Know

Interestingly enough, Achebe's own biography falls closer to the experience of the invasive Christian converts than the traditional Ibo friends and family of Okonkwo from whose point of view he so sympathetically writes this novel. Achebe wrote in 1969: "On looking back, if I had an advantage, it was that my father was a retired missionary when I was growing up; we were Christians and in our village you had two sides-the 'people of the Church' as we were called, and the 'people of the world,' the others. Although we were in the same village there was a certain distance which I think made it possible for me not to take things for granted. I say this because some of the people who grew up with me, whose parents were heathen, as we called them, these things did not strike them. At least that is what they tell me today-they took things for granted."

Didactic animal fables appear in almost all of Achebe's novels. In fact, the story of the little bird Nza which illustrates the idea that humans should never provoke their fate, shows up in both Things Fall Apart and Achebe's masterpiece, Arrow of God. To really understand Achebe's work, you might want to read through a book of Nigerian folk tales.

Browse all book notes

Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Chapters 1 and 2
Chapters 3 and 4
Chapters 5 and 6
Chapters 7 and 8
Chapters 9 and 10
Chapters 11 and 12
Chapter 13
Chapters 14 and 15
Chapters 16 and 17
Chapters 18 and 19
Chapters 20 and 21
Chapters 22 and 23
Chapters 24 and 25
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25


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