Marriage is a private affair
1. Nene is Ibibio while Nnaemeka is Ibo. He is sure his father won’t approve of their union because Nene is not Ibo. He understands that in remote areas like in Ibo, parents get happy only if they arrange their children’s union.
2. According to Okeke, love is not the most important aspect of marriage. What a man ought to look for first if whether the girl is of a strong Christian background. It is why when his son refuses his own choice of a wife to marry a girl he believes he loves, Okeke becomes deeply disappointed. His perception of a good wife is old fashioned. He is opposed to Nene’s teaching job because he believes that women should not be allowed to teach others as the bible says.
3. Initially, Okeke had refused to see Nnaemeka’s family because he had not married from their ethnic group. His marriage did not adhere to their set traditional standards. He changes when he hears that his two grandchildren wish to see him.
4. At the end of the story, it starts raining as Okeke reads the letter from Nene, telling him about the grandchildren. The rain is symbolic of his breakdown, depression and his final change of heart. He knew that he had to accept Nene and the children finally.
5. The ironic aspect of the title is in the use of the word private. The title says that marriage is a private affair while Nene and Nnaemeka’s marriage is not private but public. The father …
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