Jonathan Iwegbu in Civil Peace

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About this sample

About this sample


Words: 618 |

Page: 1|

4 min read

Published: Mar 20, 2024

Words: 618|Page: 1|4 min read

Published: Mar 20, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Survival and Resilience
  2. The Challenges of Reconstruction
  3. Opportunities for Reconstruction
  4. Conclusion

Jonathan Iwegbu is the protagonist of the short story "Civil Peace" by Chinua Achebe. The story is set in post-civil war Nigeria and follows Jonathan, a man who has miraculously survived the conflict and is determined to rebuild his life and provide for his family. Jonathan's resilience and determination in the face of adversity reflect the broader themes of survival, resourcefulness, and the human spirit in the aftermath of war. This essay will analyze Jonathan Iwegbu's character in "Civil Peace" and explore how his experiences reflect the challenges and opportunities of post-war reconstruction.

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Survival and Resilience

Jonathan's character embodies the spirit of survival and resilience in the face of overwhelming adversity. The civil war has left him with very little - his home has been destroyed, his possessions looted, and his former life upended. Despite this, Jonathan remains determined to make the best of his situation. Achebe writes, "He had come out of the war with five inestimable blessings - his head, his wife Maria's, and those of three out of their four children." This quote highlights Jonathan's ability to find value in what he still has, rather than dwelling on what he has lost.

Jonathan's resourcefulness is also evident in his willingness to adapt to the new economic and social conditions of post-war Nigeria. He takes up various odd jobs, such as selling coal and renting out his bicycle, to earn a living and provide for his family. Jonathan's ability to adapt and find new ways to support himself and his family reflects the broader theme of resilience in the face of adversity.

The Challenges of Reconstruction

Jonathan's experiences in "Civil Peace" also shed light on the challenges of reconstruction in post-war Nigeria. The civil war has not only left physical destruction in its wake but has also disrupted social and economic structures. Jonathan's attempts to rebuild his life are hindered by the scarcity of resources, lack of infrastructure, and the presence of opportunistic individuals seeking to exploit the vulnerable.

One of the major challenges Jonathan faces is the lack of access to basic necessities, such as housing and food. Achebe writes, "There was no peace to be had even in this post-war period for people like him; and he was sure they were the majority." This quote underscores the widespread impact of the war on the population and the enduring struggle for survival in its aftermath.

Opportunities for Reconstruction

Despite the challenges he faces, Jonathan also encounters opportunities for reconstruction and progress in post-war Nigeria. One such opportunity comes in the form of the new currency issued by the government. Jonathan is able to exchange the worthless Biafran pounds he had hidden during the war for the new Nigerian currency, providing him with a small but significant amount of money.

Jonathan's ability to capitalize on this opportunity reflects the resilience and resourcefulness that define his character. He uses the money to start a new business, demonstrating his determination to rebuild his life and provide for his family. This example highlights the potential for economic recovery and growth in post-war Nigeria, despite the prevailing challenges.

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The character of Jonathan Iwegbu in "Civil Peace" embodies the spirit of survival, resilience, and determination in the face of adversity. His experiences reflect the broader challenges and opportunities of post-war reconstruction in Nigeria. Jonathan's ability to adapt to the new economic and social conditions, as well as his willingness to seize opportunities for progress, demonstrate the potential for recovery and growth in the aftermath of conflict. Through Jonathan's story, Achebe offers a poignant exploration of the human spirit and its capacity for resilience in the most challenging of circumstances.

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This essay was reviewed by
Prof. Linda Burke

Cite this Essay

Jonathan Iwegbu in Civil Peace. (2024, March 20). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 20, 2024, from
“Jonathan Iwegbu in Civil Peace.” GradesFixer, 20 Mar. 2024,
Jonathan Iwegbu in Civil Peace. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 20 May 2024].
Jonathan Iwegbu in Civil Peace [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Mar 20 [cited 2024 May 20]. Available from:
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