Answer to Question #196874 in English for Lawrence

Question #196874

Describe these two characters in about 200 words bringing out their difference and similarities.

Okonkwo and obierika

Expert's answer

Okonkwo and Obierika, two characters in Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart, are two different people, yet they share some of the same qualities and beliefs. Okonkwo is stubborn, headstrong, and rigid. Obierika is open-minded, thoughtful, and expressive. Both believe and follow the same religion, and attempt to attain honor in their society. They are friends that are not afraid to criticize one another or point out each others faults. Okonkwo is very rigid, closed off, and unwilling to accept those he deemed unsuccessful, He had no patience for unsuccessful people. while Obierika is tolerant, open to change, and willing to consider other people’s beliefs and ideas. Okonkwo is willing to follow his peoples beliefs and values unerringly and without question. He also fears that he will be thought weak in the eyes of the tribesmen so he becomes fanatical in appearing the pinnacle of strength and manliness. This fanaticism leads him to kill his surrogate son, Ikemefuna, as it was the will of the gods.

He heard Ikemefuna cry, My father, they have killed me! as he ran towards him. Dazed with fear, Okonkwo drew his machete and cut him down. He was afraid of being thought weak.

Okonkwo's fears of weakness lead him to do a great many things that ultimately mean his own downfall.  

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