Blog #11 – Achebe and Elemnts of Time and Space

Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart” is regarded as a strong example of post-colonial literature. The story also features many aspects of Realism, such as the up-close look of the main character, Okonkwo. Also, throughout the course of the story, the reader experiences a strong sense of verisimilitude. Achebe introduces the idea of history, which helps to strengthen the novel’s realistic features. One aspect that did strike me as a bit odd, however, was the idea of time. In class, we discussed how, for the most part, Achebe displays time fairly accurately throughout the novel. However, this accurate display of time is disrupted when Okonkwo is banished for the accidental murder of the young boy. These seven years, and the time immediately following it, seem to move by faster, at an almost surreal pace. From Okonkwo’s banishment, to his return, to his eventual death, are all presented to the reader very rapidly. These aspects undermine the idea of a fluid and normal movement of time, which could be seen as Achebe being influenced by the Modernist and Post-modernist movements before his time.

One Response to “Blog #11 – Achebe and Elemnts of Time and Space”

  1. Kim Sasser says:

    I, too, find it intriguing to consider TFA’s relationship to realism simply because of the way it differs ideologically from the kind of Enlightenment realism described by Weinstein. We’re off Weinstein’s grid with this novel, yet, at the same, time, the text does entail many characteristic features of realism, as you detail so well.

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