Things Fall Apart: Chapter 3

How did Okonkwo build his fortune?Did he have any help? Okonkwo built his fortune alone as a sharecropper because Unoka was never able to have a successful harvest
What was Unoka told by the Oracle? Unoka was told that he failed because of his laziness
What shameful illness did Unoka die of? “swelling which was an abomination to the earth goddess”
What happens to those who have Unoka’s illness? Those suffering from swelling stomachs and limbs are left in the Evil Forest to die so that they do not offend the earth by being buried
Why didn’t Unoka hold a community title? Unoka never held any of the community’s four prestigious titles (because they must be paid for), and he left numerous debts unpaid
What is the result of Unoka’s unpaid debts? As a result, Okonkwo cannot count on Unoka’s help in building his own wealth and in constructing his obi
Why does Okonkwo work hard? he has to work hard to make up for his father’s negative strikes against him
Describe Okonkwo’s success. Okonkwo succeeds in exceeding all the other clansmen as a warrior, a farmer, and a family provider
How does Okonkwo begin his wealth? He begins by asking a wealthy clansman, Nwakibie, to give him 400 seed yams to start a farm
What did Nwakibie do for Okonkwo? Why? Because Nwakibie admired Okonkwo’s hard-working nature, he gave him eight hundred seed yams
Where does Okonkwo get even more seed yams One of Unoka’s friends gave him another four hundred
What prevents Okonkwo’s crops from flourishing? horrible droughts and relentless downpours
How much of the harvest does Okonkwo keep? one third of the harvest
What happens to the lazy farmers? Some farmers who were lazier than Okonkwo put off planting their yams and thus avoided the grave losses suffered by Okonkwo and the other industrious farmers
What effect does that devastating harvest have on Okonkwo? for the rest of his life he considers his survival during that difficult period proof of his fortitude and inner mettle
How does Okonkwo react to his father’s attempted aid? Okonkwo felt only disgust for someone who would turn to words at a time when either action or silence was called for

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