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Achebe expresses the effects of the missionaries clearly through the repeated imagery of the tribal drums.The signature Umuofian drums are heard many times throughout the story—until the Europeans arrive in the tribe—after which the drums are heard no more. “The drums were still beating, persistent and unchanging.
The clash of cultures is undoubtedly one of the most universal themes seen in literature. and China are one example; the Palestinians and Israelis are another—continue their struggles to reconcile dissimilar beliefs through negotiation, and in some cases, armed conflict.
This cultural clash can be seen throughout life and history anytime two groups of people hold differing views that cannot coexist. Similarly, the European missionaries and the native Umuofians struggle to coexist peacefully.
by Chinua Achebe, the reader is taken on a literary journey to a Nigerian tribe, the Umuofia, to experience first-hand the struggles of a warrior named Okonkwo.
At first glance, the novel appears to be written for a very specific audience: scholars familiar with Nigerian history, traditions, and culture.
When Okonkwo returns from his seven year exile, he finds the Europeans dominating Umuofian culture—even controlling the Umuofian government. Family ties—once so important in Umuofian society—are now nearly meaningless.
In this clash between tradition and change, change was the clear-cut winner. [The drums] filled him with fire as it had always done from his youth.
In order to sculpt a literary monument to the human condition and these universal themes, the author, Achebe, employs a broad variety of literary tools.
Literary devices play a crucial role in enhancing the novel’s main themes and earning its widespread acceptance as a quality piece of literature.
And this is the beauty of Achebe’s fire metaphor, which is seen throughout the novel.
Ultimately, the success of as a novel of literary merit is due to Achebe’s use of universal literary themes like self-exploration, change, tradition, cultural clash, and masculinity versus femininity.