Dimaraganaism in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart: An Anatomy of Okonkwo’s Entangled Heroism

Emmanuel Ikechukwu Asika

Abstract


Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart is reputed as one of the best books to have ever come from the African scene. Translated in over 58 languages in the world and recognized as one of the Africa’s 100 Best Books of the 20th century, the novel is one of the pioneering works that laid the foundation for Africa literature. Okonkwo, the hero of the novel represents a typical traditional Igbo man in all his might and valour prior to the coming of the white men. Okonkwo is one character that has attracted the attention of scholars over the years. Many have extolled him as the hero of his time, a hero destroyed by the breakage of the African cultural values as a result of the unavoidable contact between Africans and the Europeans. This paper adopts a different approach in its enquiry and anatomy of the character and personality of Okonkwo. This paper examined Okonkwo in the light of the character of Dimaragana. Dimaragana in the context he was described in the novel is a character that would not lend his knife to cut a dog-meat because it is a taboo; rather he lends his teeth for the same business. This paper examined Okonkwo vis-à-vis the character of Dimaragana. The study portrays Okonkwo as a coward who propelled himself to his own ruin. His actions portray the opposite of what he stands for and represents in his community. The paper concludes on the idea that Okonkwo was the architect of his own tragic end, and just like foolish Dimaragana, he took many decisions that brought about his end and a total anti-climax of what was intended from the personality of a true warrior one is tempted to believe he was and represent.


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References


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