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Things Fall Apart Written by Chinua Achebe

Essay by   •  June 10, 2011  •  Book/Movie Report  •  498 Words (2 Pages)  •  2,192 Views

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In the novel Things Fall Apart, written by Chinua Achebe, it is a story about a very unique culture. This Ibo culture use to be at the top of its game before the British came. The greatest man in the village, Okwonkwo, use to be well respected. He earned his titles from pure ash and lead his village. This culture was full of amazing traditional arts that represented spiritual binding or promotions of new statues. These guys had people wearing mask arriving from the underworlds. This is way back and there are guys that have crazy tattoos that in their culture, is a lot of respect. When a man inherits a new title, he would get a whole new design and material for his door. Ibo people sometimes wear mask that represent either a ancestral spirit or god. They have statues that they believe are gods. The Ibo society has great artistic culture that could always represent different ancestors or clan rankings.

Mask in the Ibo culture is a great deal. These men named egwugwus would show up from the underworld from time to time. These men who use mask could either be good or bad. Each egwugwu could be assigned to each village, there are nine of them. The egwugwu assigned to Okwonkwo's village has its own spiritual house but, it is faced towards the Evil Forest. Mask are sometimes used to imitate ancestors during festivals. There are two types of mask, the maiden spirit mask represents beauty and peacfulness. The elephant spirit represents aggression and strength.

Masquerades are apart of the Iko Okochi harvest festival, and the forms of mask are based on tradition. Mask are either made from wood or fabric, are used in many celebrations or rituals such as social satires, sacred rituals, initiation, second burials, and public festivals includes: constumes, musical instruments, song, dance, and participation, from the entire village. Another special mask is theone that the white man used. He could also be referred to Onyoeocha. he performs as part of a masquerade in which the Asufu is the hero. People would see his performance as a time of laughter, but he is really studying and taking notes. Masked are carved to look like ancestors but not nescesarily look like them. It would probably be big eyes and paint designs on them. Mask that are worn by the egwugwus is usually people that are very old. When egwugwus show up at a funeral. they will tell people about what the dead guy accomplished in his life. They would decide where they should go and if he may be reborned.

The Ibo society was a rich artistic culture that had many different types of art. These people have been stripped of their religion and culture. There are still historical artifacts that we could remember them by.



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