Analyzing The Umuofian Society

Analyzing The Umuofian Society

Community Customs Organizer


Think about the “rituals” or “customs” of your community. Friday night football games, holiday celebrations or feasts, ceremonies such as graduations and weddings, the ways people react to insults or slights: all of these, and more, have a place in modern communities. Do you think these are positive or negative influences on the community and the people within it?

  • Create a Community Customs Organizer in your notebook or print out the one provided.
  • Complete the Community Customs Organizer for three customs.

Then discuss as a class:

  • What is a custom? Share some of your responses.
  • Are there customs that you like more than others?
  • Are there customs that people do or don’t follow regularly?

The Death of Ikemefuna

Work Time

It could be argued that the customs of Umuofia led to the unnecessary death of Ikemefuna, an innocent boy. With your group, discuss whether this is true.

Then, think about your character’s response to the death of Ikemefuna. How would your character react? Whom would your character blame? What kinds of judgments would your character form about the people involved in the killing? Be specific and refer to evidence from the text.

  • Compose a short message, as if you were writing a tweet (140 characters or less), about this event and share it with your class. To save space you may use Internet abbreviations and shorthand.

Open Notebook

Customs of Umuofia

Work Time

Now, further analyze the customs of Umuofia. Which ones have you learned about through the reading so far? How would your character feel about them?

  • Create a Dialectical Journal #4 in your notebook.
  • Split up the reading with your group members, and compile a Dialectical Journal. Each quotation you find should reveal something about the customs of Umuofia; in your explanations describe how your character would feel about these customs.

Discuss your results with your group members.

Customs and Your Character


How does your character feel about the customs of Umuofia?

  • Choose one representative from your group to explain how your character feels about the customs of Umuofia.

Open Notebook

Your Character and Things Fall Apart


Complete a character journal entry.

  • Choose one custom that you feel your character would have particularly strong opinions (positive or negative) about. Compose an entry for your community group in which you explain this custom from your character’s perspective, explaining what the custom is and why your character feels it is positive or negative.

Open Notebook

Read three to five of your classmates’ entries.

Read Chapters 9 and 10 of Things Fall Apart. Continue to add to your Personal Glossary as you read.