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Things Fall Apart

Chinua Achebe
Summary

Key Questions and Answers

Summary Key Questions and Answers

6) Why are the villagers shocked when Okonkwo beats his wife during the Week of Peace?

The villagers are shocked when Okonkwo beats his wife during the Week of Peace because these days mark a sacred time during which the villagers of Umuofia honor the earth goddess and secure her protection and blessings for the year. As the narrator explains, “It was unheard of to beat somebody during the sacred week.” Any violation of peace during the week puts the community at risk for a bad harvest—or worse. For his crime, Okonkwo is fined one length of cloth and one hundred cowries, and he is asked to sacrifice one of his goats and one of his hens.