Conflicts, their Resolutions and Social Development: A Study of Chinua Achebe's Arrow of God

IFEJIRIKA ECHEZONA

Abstract


In literary parlance, conflicts exist between protagonist(s) and antagonists) when their relationship is built on mutual hatred, suspicion, distrust, opposition and rivalry. And the resolution of such conflicts is achieved when either the protagonists) or antagonist^) surrenders), is defeated, disappears or dies. In this premise, in Chinua Achebe's Arrow of God, these conflicts are. identified: Umuaro and Okperi land dispute, Ezeulu and Captain Winterbottom's personality and philosophical conflict, Ezeulu and Umuaro power/authority conflict, Ezeulu and his deity-Ulu conflict, traditional belief system and Christian belief conflict and Mr. Wright and Obika's age grade conflict. While some of these conflicts were positively resolved, 'others got negative resolution. For instance, the land conflict between Umuaro and Okperi was resolved by Captain Winterbottom through Ezeulu’s truthful witnessing against his people and the confiscation and burning of some of their guns. The sudden and severe fever suffered by Captain Winterbottom resolved the conflict between him and Ezeulu. as Winterbottom was removed from the scene. The mass defection of Umuaro to Christianity solved the problem between Ezeulu and his people .and the trouble between traditional religion and Christianity was also solved through Ezeulu’s stubbornness and the mass defection of Umuaro people to the western religion. Mr. Wright's conflict with Obika’s age grade during the road construction was resolved by Captain Winterbottom’s counsel and advice for caution and mutual respect. Ezeulu's rift with Ulu was resolved through Obika’s sudden and painful death during the Ogbazulu Obodo and Ezeulu's eventual heartbreak and mental degeneration. On the -whole, conflicts act as challenges' to human intellect and their resolutions serve as catalyst to peace and social development as evidently demonstrated in Arrow of God.

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References


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