Gender roles played a bid part in Ibos society. This includes the crops that men and women grew, to the portrayal of crimes.

In precolonial Igbo (Ibo) community, women are the weaker sex who are provided with qualities that make them worthwhile, like being able to birth children. The role women were expected to care about,their first priority, was being a pure bride for an honorable men.

They also do other handy things the men were “too important” to do, like cleaning and cooking.

Bearing lot of children was very important, but having twins was bad so they would take them to the “Evil Forest”.

Women did not have education either. They would learn from their mother’s folk tales that they were supposedly told all the time.

Social and economic activities were done by men. Men do all the yard work, such as tapping trees and harvesting yams. Having a honorable, tough, basically masculine husband was all women were supposed to ask for, and anything less was not worthy of having a wife.

Much of the gender theme in the book is based on the idea of balance between masculinity and femininity. If there even starts to be an unbalance, it upsets the whole system. For example, when Ekwefi trims the tree, something a man should normally be allowed to do, Okonkwo gets mad and almost kills her.

The gender roles in Igbos society has changed. Women used to just do chores like cooking and cleaning. Men were also the only ones allowed to earn title, but in current day now women can too. A great step forward for women is education. There wasn’t any school in Nigeria, so the women would learn from folk tales and from watching their mother around the house. Back then, men also held the power. Men did all the hard labor. Now both women and men are equal.


Widjaja, Michael. Bio Village. 2000. Accessed 24 March 2017

Snoop Editorial Team. Things Fall Apart Theme Of Gender. 11 November 2008 Accessed 24 March 2017

Created By
Kansas Oehlsen


Created with images by bones64 - "women's march sign child" • fechi fajardo - "The Sadness of Yesteryear" • Evil Erin - "Woman's work is never done" • tvdflickr - "Just being kids." • Andrew Mason - "Red Forest" • hairy:jacques - "Garth K., 33" • ITU Pictures - "Equals"

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.