Things Fall Apart

Way in which okonkwo is not like his father?

chapter 1-5


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Okonkwo's father, a man by the name of Unoka, was a lazy do-nothing, who has died deep in debt. The narrator digresses to tell us about Unoka. Unoka was a great flute player in his youth, but he became a failure as an adult. He was constantly borrowing from his friends and neighbors, and his children and wife did not have enough to eat. Unoka dies deep in debt.  Okonkwo overcompensates for his father's weaknesses. Though young, he is already a great man. He has two barns full of yams, and he has fought bravely in two inter-tribal wars. He has taken two titles already. He has three wives. The narrator tells us that his high standing was the reason he was trusted to watch over the doomed boy who was sacrificed to Umuofia to avoid war. Okonkwo despises sensitive emotion. He is paranoid of weakness physically or emotionally.