“ things fall apart ” H u m a n i t i e s
Write a short essay of 1700-2000 words (MLA Format), approximately 5-6 typed pages of text. In “Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe describe and demonstrate some aspects of the history, culture, or social organization of the culture in which it was created and analyzes some aspect of the interactions (cooperative, competitive, combative) within that culture. Focus on the native culture and treat the other as an invasion that disrupts the native culture and even the divides the members of the native culture. Some Topic ideas include:
Race and class issues: how do people of different racial or ethnic groups or of different economic or social classes interact with each other? What power relationships exist?
Gender issues: how do women and men interact? What are the roles of men and women and the power relations between them? What are the courtship and marriage practices of the culture? How are women treated in the society?
Social practices: What practices are acceptable in the culture and what ones are not (which can be narrowed down to a specific sort of practices or conventions)? How do people behave toward their superiors and their inferiors?
Religion and beliefs: What religious beliefs, practices, organization, devotions, rituals, and related religious items occur in the culture? What beliefs in supernatural and/or magical powers (gods, spirits, demons, etc.) does the culture accept? What ones do they reject? Do different people hold different beliefs? What happens when two religious systems come into contact? Does this cause cooperation? competition? conflict?
Political structures and power: What are the political structures in the culture and how do they function? Who holds power? How are governmental units run? Are there conflicts?
Families and family structures: How important is family? How does family structure relate to forms of power and other relationships outside the family? What constitutes a family in this culture? Where does that family live and do all family members live together?
War, warfare, and military practices: How is warfare conducted? Do warriors constitute the dominant class in society? How do warriors interact with other members of the society?
The natural world and its effect on humans: Is nature seen as primarily benign or hostile? How are natural events such as storms understood? What control does the society exert over natural elements?