Chapter 5 Notes from Things Fall Apart

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Things Fall Apart Chapter 5

The New Yam Festival celebration immediately following the harvest brought the long-awaited wrestling that Umuofia so enjoyed. People of the village invited their in-laws and friends from other villages to come to the celebration and days of preparation went into the festivities. Before any of the harvested yams could be eaten, an offering had to be made to the ancestors and that was the kick-off of the celebration. Three days before the festival, Okonkwo had an outburst and beat Ekwefi, his second wife. When he was done abusing her, he decided to go hunting and called for his rusty, old gun that he had never used. The beaten woman made the mistake of muttering some comment about his inability to hunt well, and in a rage, he shot the gun at her, but missed and then walked out of the house.

The second day of the new year was when the wrestling took place, and Ekwefi was as excited about it this year as she had been in her youth when she was the village beauty. Okonkwo had won her heart when he defeated Amaline the Cat long ago. Although Ekwefi had been forced to marry another because Okonkwo was too poor to afford her bride price, she had run away from her husband a few years later to live with Okonkwo as his second wife. Ezinma was Ekwefi's only living child, and although Okonkwo was as brusque with her as he was with everyone, he was very fond of the young girl because she understood him. He often wished to himself that Ezinma had been born a boy.

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