We continue to see how things fall apart when these beliefs and customs are confronted by those of the white missionaries.
The main reason for the culture clash is the lack of social interaction and understanding between the cultures and as written in the book, the whites attempt to show the people of Umuofia their religion and their traditions, leading to the deterioration of the Igbo culture. The misunderstanding did not end at the end of the novel thought; the colonizers are the ones who recorded the history, so, Achebe claims in his novel Home and Exile, “…until the lions produce their own historian, the story of the hunt will glorify only the hunter” (Achebe 73). The cultural misunderstanding led to a false history, with characters written from the aspirations and doubts of people whose uniformed accounts are prevalent even today. Umuofian traditions cruelty to minorities further it’s collapse. The people casts aside are the ones who first join the church.
The conflicts between the modern and traditional, individual and community are highlighted in Obierika’s conflict of loyalties: personal/tribal, human/religious, particularly when he fathers twins but then has to leave them in the evil forest, comforting Okonkwo then having to destroy his house. Ernest N. Emeyonu, author of A Classic Study in Colonial Diplomatic Tactlessness states, “From every indication it destroyed total unity among the people and they could no longer fight a common enemy as before” (45). This inner, personal conflict grew into an external, community conflict leading to a deterioration of the cultural identity of the Umuofian people.
The white missionaries pushed for a change in religion within the tribe, some abiding to it and others refusing to. But the white missionaries weren’t the only ones to cause such conflict as shown in Emeyonu’s quote. It was not only the new information about the foreign religions that tore the culture’s identity apart, but the internal conflict within the tribe’s peoples and not knowing whether to follow the customs, or act on personal thoughts.