Eugene is a complex and absorbing character. whose shadow falls strongly on his married woman and kids. Born during the colonial period in Nigeria. he was raised by priests and left his state to analyze in England. He is praised for his brave base against the military government in Nigeria and admired for his success in the concern universe. Privately. nevertheless. he is revealed to be a spiritual fiend who regulations his family with his fists. Eugene is tormented by an on-going sense of cultural lower status.
The adult male of honor in society “Papa deserved congratulations for non taking to hold more boies with another adult female. of class. for non taking to take a 2nd married woman. . ” ( p. 20 ) Man of rule. refuses to pay payoffs to police officers ( p. 111 ) Won a human rights award but modestly did non desire to be featured in newspaper After his decease. Kambili discovers Papa anonymously donated to “children’s infirmaries and motherless babes places and handicapped veterans from the civil war. ”
The Colonial Product In denial of his cultural roots: “He barely spoke Igbo. and although Jaja and I spoke it with Mama at place. he did non like us to talk it in public. We had to sound civilized in public. he told us ; we had to talk English. Papa’s sister. Aunty Ifeoma. said one time that Papa was excessively much of a colonial merchandise. ” P. 13 “Papa changed his speech pattern when he spoke. sounding British… . He was gracious in the eager-to-please manner he ever assumed with the spiritual. particularly the white spiritual. ” His feelings of shame/cultural lower status: “I didn’t have a male parent who sent me to the best schools. My male parent spent his clip idolizing Gods of wood and rock. I would be nil today but for the priests and sisters at the mission. ” P. 47 While Eugene rejects his ain male parent on the evidences of his “godlessness” he is proud of Grandfather ( the children’s maternal gramps ) . “Grandfather was really light skinned. about albino. . he unfalteringly spoke English… He knew Latin too…” P. 67
The devout truster He is used as an illustration to others: “Father Benedict normally referred to the Catholic Pope. Papa and Jesus — in that order. ” When he kneels to have Communion. and shuts his eyes “so hard his face tightened into a face. ” When he says grace. “for 20 proceedingss he asked God to bless the food… he intoned the Blessed Virgin in several different rubrics. ” He is overly ardent. He is revered in church scenes about like a life saint or “god” . On Christmas twenty-four hours. “He led the manner out of the hall. smiling and beckoning at the many custodies that reached out to hold on his white adventitia as if touching him would mend them of an unwellness. ” p. 90
…and the spiritual overzealous Eugene is a spiritual fundamentalist who can non digest any little divergence from the regulations. He lashes out with his belt when he discovers Kambili eating cornflakes before Mass. shouting “Has the Satan built a collapsible shelter in my house? ” . He shows no humanity. But afterwards he seems ashamed although he can’t admit it. inquiring alternatively “why do you like wickedness? ” P 102 Ifeoma says “ Eugene has to halt making God’s occupation. God is large plenty to make his ain occupation. If God will judge our male parent for taking to follow the manner of our ascendants. so allow God make the judgment. non Eugene. ” p. 95 His ain sense of ineptitude seems to drive his behavior. Following confession with Father Benedict. Papa says “I am spotless. we are all spotless. If God calls us. we are traveling directly to Heaven. ” …His eyes were bright. ” 107
After being caught masturbating at St Gregory’s – a priest made him soak his custodies in hot H2O. After the decease of Ade and he catches K and J looking at the picture of Papa Nnukwu – he beats her to a mush. go forthing her with a broken rib. He is perchance taking out his sense of guilt about his relationship with his male parent / Ade’s decease on them p211 He does flog out during nerve-racking periods of his life. As Amaka observes: “Uncle Eugene is non a bad adult male. truly. Peoples have jobs. people make mistakes… . I mean some people can’t trade with emphasis. ” p 251
Man of contradictions – reformer against unfairness but inhibitory towards household “He could hold chosen to be like other Big Work force in this state. he could hold decided to sit at place and make nil after the putsch. to do certain the govt did non endanger his concern. But no. he used The Standard to talk the truth even though it meant the paper lost advertisement. Brother Eugene spoke out for freedom. ” He champions human rights yet there is no freedom of address or thought in his place. After The Standard exposes corruptness and the government-sponsored violent death of an pro-democracy militant. his editor Ade Coker is arrested and later killed through a letter-bomb He says Nigeria needs a renewed democracy ( p25 ) yet he regulations his ain household as a dictator. Nwankiti Ogechi. the militant his paper supports. is killed after a gun shooting and acerb bath ( p. 200 ) . Ironically. Papa will subsequently “torture” his ain girl Kambili by pouring hot H2O over her pess in the bath for a relatively minor evildoing. He feels guilty about Ade’s decease: “I should hold protected him. ” He organises his funeral. sets up a trust for his married woman and kids. paid immense staff fillips and gave them leave. Ironically. he seems less cognizant of his ongoing opprobrious inclinations towards his household and his function as defender of his kids.
The broken “god” When the kids see Eugene once more after their clip in Nsukka – he has rashes on his face. it “looked conceited. oily. discoloured. ” He had lost weight. P. 252 His voice was different. tired. When Ade Coker is killed by a bomb. Papa calls. “He seemed so small” ( symbolic of his decreasing power ) . He falls into a semi-depression. “He took longer to answer when spoken to. to masticate his nutrient. even to happen the right Bible transitions to read. ” p 206 The soldiers begin to undermine his mills by seting dead rats in cartons so the mill is closed down. After this he seems to give up ( it could be partially the consequence of the toxicant? ) . When challenged. he gives into Jaja and lets them travel to Nsukka P 262 When Kambili hears that her male parent has died. she is shocked. “He had seemed immortal” . He is like one of her “gods”- and now he is broken. Her love for him seems like devotion to the reader.