Option #1: Research Based on Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart
The Portfolio Project is designed to require you to expand your understanding of Things Fall Apart by combining knowledge and application of content with your own interpretation and judgment. For the Portfolio Project, you will write a research paper about Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, supplementing your own interpretation with information from three to five other sources. Your interpretation of this novel should reflect an international perspective.
Finally, you will take the research question that you are developing as the thesis of your Portfolio Project and contextualize it in such a way as to convey an international or multicultural understanding of the novel. For example, if you are developing a cultural analysis of the novel, you will need to answer, as a part of your research thesis, how one culture develops in direct competition against the emergence of another foreign culture. Or, if you are developing a feminist analysis, you will need to answer, as a part of your research question, how one culture’s treatment of women changes when confronted by another culture’s differing attitude toward women. Or, if you are doing a direct compare/contrast analysis, you will need to directly compare specific aspects of one culture against another culture.
In other words, any critical perspective from which you frame your thesis and overall paper needs to convey a sharper international or multicultural understanding of the novel and should be reflected in your outline and reference list.
Throughout the novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, customs and traditions played a vital role in the fate of men, women and children. Although some of these traditions were questioned and criticized by some, Okonkwo believed and practiced the sacred customs. The colonization subjected the village to new customs, religion and laws. While some converted and supported the new changes quickly, others, like Okonkwo resisted. Some of the Igbo tribe, including Okonkwo, disliked the white man and colonization. However, as colonization threatens these customs and traditions, change seems inevitable.