Monday, 25 April 2011

The Funeral Ceremony

From: Ben G. and Daniel S.

A definition of the concept as found in the novel:

The funeral ceremony in Things Fall Apart involves numerous customs, including the
banging of drums and ekwe, and gun firing. Fellow warriors come to the funeral, dressed in smoke raffia shirts and painted with chalk and charcoal. Men would also dress up in ancestral spirits (the egwuwu). Some are very violent. Others are harmless. Machetes are strike together in salute.

As the ceremony continues,
a person comes with basket full of water towards the corpse. The person makes speech (a eulogy). Dancing commences after the speech, and the corpse is buried at darkness. Sons of those who have died dance a farewell dance.

If someone is killed during the funeral ceremony, the murderer is banished for seven years. This happens to Okwonkwo, who accidentally kills a son of the dead father.

A contemporary article about present-day customs in Nigerian funeral ceremonies:

An example of a modern-day Nigerian funeral ceremony: