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We are introduced to Okonkwo, a great man among the Igbo tribe, well known in the nine villages and beyond. In his youth, he became famous when he defeated Amilinze the Cat, a great wrester. He is a formidable man, stern and intimidating in appearance; when angry, he stammers. The stammer makes him angrier, and he uses his fists. He has a hot temper. He has no patience for unsuccessful men; his father had been such a man. His 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.