In Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe shows the importance of feminine virtues in the Ibo tribe. In the novel women, regarded highly for their importance in bearing children and acting as wives, receive praised for their significance. Achebe illustrates the women of the tribe as strong, powerful people whose importance you cannot fail to notice. "Anasi was a middle aged woman, tall and strongly built. There was authority in her bearing and she looked every inch the ruler of the womenfolk in a large and prosperous family" (Achebe 20).
Often entrusted with instilling morality in their children and governing their conduct, women in the tribe hold high regard in the respects of their fellow tribe's people. A female goddess will remind men to uphold their morals and mind their conduct, much the way a mother would her child. Once again, a mother holds a high magnitude in the tribe. Mothers and wives appear as the only two positions that women in the Ibo tribe can receive praise for. Outside these roles of acting as mother and/or wife, a woman will receive little, if any respect. "It was clear from the way the crowd stood that this was a ceremony for me. There were many women, but they looked on from the fringe like outsiders" (Achebe 87). With festivals held in public places, men presided and took seats of honor in front. Women, forced to stand at the edges, looked on from there because they simply did not hold importance.
Also, throughout the book, Achebe emphasizes the women's role in childbearing and their fault if the child's would not occur healthily. "Nneka has had four previous pregnancies and childbirths. But each time she had born twins, and they had been immediately thrown away. Her husband and his family were already becoming highly critical of such a woman and were not unduly perturbed when they found she had fled to join the Christians. It was a good rid