Things Fall Apart

Globalization in Things Fall Apart and Gods Without Men: A Challenge to Spirituality? College

After conducting extensive research studying cultures around the world, theorist and social anthropologist Peter Van Der Veer remarked that "the critical elements, like those to be found in the spiritual ideas at the beginning of the 20th century, are missing" (Van Der Veer). Spirituality, a fundamental element at the root of most cultures, has been significantly influenced by the phenomenon of globalization. In the novels Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe and Gods Without Men by Hari Kunzru, globalization breaks down cultural barriers by forming an interconnectedness among people, thus challenging one’s sense of spirituality.

In Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe portrays globalization and its effect on spirituality through the theme of tradition versus change. The Igbo, a people that greatly valued their cultural identity, is threatened when white colonialists bring Christianity to Umuofia. Their arrival triggers change within the Igbo culture, causing the tribe to compromise their customs and accommodate the new settlers:

“And at last the locusts did descend. They settled on every tree and on every blade of grass; they settled on the roofs and covered the bare ground. Mighty tree branches broke away under them, and the whole...

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