Things Fall Apart
Chinua Achebe
Contributed by Jack Shields
Character Analysis

Okonkwo, pronounced as Oh-kawn-kwoh, is the character around whom the proceedings in Things Fall Apart occur. Okonkwo is privileged to be a young leader of the African Igbo community that is known as Umuofia (Oo-moo-oh-fee-ah). Okonkwo is a fearless warrior who has succeeded in many battles. Besides, Okonkwo is also a successful farmer. Having been born of lazy and fruitless father, Okonkwo is highly determined to make sure that he overcomes this undesirable legacy left by his father.

Unoka (Ooh-no-kah)

Unoka is Okonkwo’s father. He has a reputation for his laziness and apparent lack of responsibility.

Nwoye (Nuh-woh-yeh)

Nwoye is Okonkwo’s oldest son. When the novel begins, Nwoye is 12 years old. Nwoye emerges as an incredibly sensitive young man.

Ikemefuna (Ee-keh-meh-foo-nah)

To avoid prospects of war, Ikemefuna is given to Umuofia by a neighboring community. Ikemefuna is an incredibly young man and he also proves to be very resourceful to his community.

Ekwefi (Eh-kweh-fee)

She is Okonkwo’s second wife, the mother of Ezinma. Ezinma is her only surviving child.

Ojiubo (Oh-jee-ooh-boh)

She is Okonkwo’s third wife. Together with Okonkwo, Ojiubo has several children.

Obierika (Oh-bee-air-ee-kah)

He is Okonkwo’s best friend. He is a sober ad reasonable man. He represents the voice of reason. His children are Maduka and Ekueke.

Agbala (Ahg-bah-lah)

The Oracle of the Hills and the Caves, who influences all aspects of Umuofian life. She is based on the real Oracle at Awka, who controlled Igbo life for centuries.

Mr. Brown

The first white Christian missionary in Umuofia and Mbanta. An understanding and accommodating man, he is inclined to listen to the Igbos.

The Reverend James Smith

A strict, stereotypical white Christian missionary, he takes over the church after Mr. Brown's departure.

The District Commissioner

A stern, stereotypical white colonial administrator of Umuofia. He follows regulations to the letter and possesses little knowledge or understanding of the people for whom he tries to administer a new government

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