Though set several decades after "Things Fall Apart", "No Longer at Ease" continues many of the themes from Achebe's first novel. Here, the clash between European culture and traditional culture has become entrenched during the long period of colonial rule. Obi struggles to balance the demands of his family and village for monetary support while simultaneously keeping up with the materialism of Western culture.
Furthermore, Achebe depicts a family continuity between Ogbuefi Okonkwo in "Things Fall Apart" and his grandson Obi Okonkwo in "No Longer at Ease". Both men are confrontational, speak their minds, and have some self-destructive tendencies. However, this aggressive streak manifests itself in different ways. Where his grandfather was a man of action and violence, Obi is a man of words and thoughts to the exclusion of action.