Conflict between Modernity and Tradition in "Dead Men’s Path" The conflict between modernity and the ways of the past is a common theme in many works. Some authors seek to prove that the ways of the past are barbaric. Other authors seek to show that the pursuit of modern ways is destructive. In “Dead Men’s Path,” Chinua Achebe is arguing for the second type of argument. This essay argues that Achebe is suggesting that the blind pursuit of modernity is destructive. To begin this argument it is necessary to consider the theme of the work. A theme is the overall meaning of a story (Gwynn 47). In this case the primary theme is the conflict between old and new ways. The protagonist Michael Obi is a staunch proponent of modernization. The...The end:
.....an be argued that Obi was too zealous. There were warnings, and in the end, even his supervisors believed that he went too far. In conclusion, “Dead Men’s Path” by Chinua Achebe looks at the conflict between modernity and tradition. This major theme is developed using three sub-topics. The first is the way colonialism divides populations. The second is the need of cultural diplomacy to mediate the division created by colonialism. The final topic is how being overly zealous destroys dreams. Works Cited Achebe, Chinua, “Dead Man’s Path” in Literature A Pocket Anthology, R. S. Gwynn(ed), Fourth Edition, Penguin Academics, New York, 2009: 235-238. R. S. Gwynn(ed), Literature A Pocket Anthology, Fourth Edition, Penguin Academics, New York, 2009.