Why is Okonkwo unhappy with his son and heir? How does his feelings towards Nwoye compare with his feelings towards Ikemefuna? How do Okonkwo’s feelings affect Nwoye?

Okonkwo is unhappy with his son and heir Nwoye because he resembles more like his grandfather Unoka, lazy and easy-going. Ikemefuna is a fifteen years old boy from a neighbouring tribe who is given to Umuofia as a sacrifice. Ikemefuna lives with Okonkwo’s family for three years and is loved by everyone in the household. Ikemefuna is masculine and possesses many character traits that Okonkwo admires. Okonkwo values Ikemefuna’s ability to identify birds, trap rodents and make flute. Okonkwo is also pleased with the effect that Ikemefuna has had on Nwoye. Okonkwo enjoys Ikemefuna and loves him like a son.

It is ironic that Okonkwo would favour Ikemefuna over his own biological son Nwoye. One would think that Okonkwo would not show the favouritism that he does. Clearly, Ikemefuna pleases Okonkwo. Ironically, Nwoye does not have his father’s heart, because he is effeminate and overly sensitive.

Okonkwo shams Nwoye and wishes that Ikemefuna was his biological son. Okonkwo truly appreciates Ikemefuna for teaching Nwoye to be a man.

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