The plot of the story advances greatly in these chapters and significant events occur in each story line.: Ezinma is healed, Obierika’s daughters is married, Ezeudu and his son die, and Okonkwo is exiled.
Questions from Books@Random:
- The villagers believe–or pretend to believe–that the “Supreme Court” of the nine egwugwu are ancestral spirits. In fact, they are men of the village in disguise. What does this say about the nature of justice in general, and in this village in particular?
- Of one of the goddesses, it is said: “It was not the same Chielo who sat with her in the market…Chielo was not a woman that night” (p. 106). What do you make of this culture where people can be both themselves and also assume other personas? Can you think of any parallels in your own world?
- Nature plays an integral role in the mythic and real life of the Ibo villagers, much more so than in our own society. Discuss ways in which their perception of animals–such as the cat, the locust, the python–differ from your own, and how these different beliefs shape our behavior.
- Of Ezinma, Okonkwo thinks: “She should have been a boy” (p. 64). Why is it necessary to the story that Okonkwo’s most favored child be a girl?
- What do you think of the marriage ceremony and the dowry described in chapter 12. What do the traditions tell us about the Ibo society? How do those traditions compare or contrast to traditional American marriage ceremonies?
- Most of the women are referred to by their relationship to men, for example, Nwoye’s mother and Obierika’s wife. Why do you think that is true? Ezinma is the only woman consistently called by her name and not her relationship to a man. Why do you think that is so? And do you think it is important to the story?