Chinua Achebe’s Use of Language in “The Theme of Change”: The Case of Things Fall Apart

Main Article Content

Setumile Morapedi


The paper discusses the theme of change in Things Fall apart, showing how Chinua Achebe has
handled language to demonstrate the conflicts that occurred between the people of Umuofia and
the white missionaries over the threat of change of the Igbo culture. The missionaries look at the
Igbo culture despicably and want Igbo people to follow Christian religion. It is shown through
some characters like Okonkwo who is portrayed as strongly resisting change from his culture to the
white man’s religion, and his son Nwoye who epitomises some of the Igbo people who give up their
culture and follow the white man’s religion. The paper shows how Okonkwo’s refusal to give up
some aspects of his culture and adopt the white man’s religion finally destroys him as he ends up
committing suicide. The message that is communicated here is the importance of considering other
people’s cultures for purposes of growth and development. In the process of preservation of one’s
culture, one should learn to accommodate other people’s cultures and adapt some aspects that are of
use for them.

Article Details