With over eight million copies in print, Chinua Achebe's work is perhaps the best-known novel in African literature. No other book so powerfully illuminates the African experience. Driven by ambition, Okonkwo works tirelessly to gain prosperity and prestige in his village. But he is harsh as well as diligent. As he sees the traditions of his people eroded by white missionaries and government officials, he lashes out in anger. "Things Fall Apart traces the growing friction between village leaders and Europeans determined to save the heathen souls of Africa. Its hero, a noble man who is driven by destructive forces, speaks a universal language.