The Thing Around Your Neck

by

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

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Obiora Character Analysis

In "Imitation," Obiora is Nkem's husband and a “Big Man” in Nigeria, as well as an avid collector of imitation tribal masks. He visits Nkem and their children in the summer and spends Christmas with them in Nigeria. He loves the status conferred upon him because he can afford to keep his family in the United States, but he refuses to work there. He maintains extramarital relationships and treats Nkem herself as a status symbol.

Obiora Quotes in The Thing Around Your Neck

The The Thing Around Your Neck quotes below are all either spoken by Obiora or refer to Obiora. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Anchor Books edition of The Thing Around Your Neck published in 2009.
Imitation Quotes

And although Nkem knew many Nigerian couples who lived together, all year, she said nothing.

Related Characters: Nkem, Obiora
Page Number: 25
Explanation and Analysis:
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Obiora Character Timeline in The Thing Around Your Neck

The timeline below shows where the character Obiora appears in The Thing Around Your Neck. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Imitation
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Stories and Representation  Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
...mask on her mantel as she listens to her friend tell her that her husband, Obiora, has a girlfriend who lives in Nkem and Obiora's house in Nigeria. When she hangs... (full context)
The American Dream Theme Icon
...America, pregnant with her first child. The house was fresh and her neighbors were helpful. Obiora called the neighbors "plastic," but both of them wanted their children to be like the... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Obiora stayed with Nkem for a few months. After that, Nkem explained to her curious neighbors... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
Back in the present, Nkem touches the Benin mask and remembers what Obiora has said about it: the masks were called "war booty" by the British, who seized... (full context)
The American Dream Theme Icon
Nkem wonders what Obiora will bring when he returns to her next week. She checks the time and sees... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
...the club of wives whose rich Nigerian husbands sent them to have babies in America. Obiora soon bought their house in America, and she liked being a part of the league... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
For the first two years, Obiora visited monthly and Nkem and the children went to Nigeria for Christmas. When Obiora got... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
Colonialism and Violence Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
...walks upstairs to the bathroom and studies herself in the mirror. She thinks about how Obiora calls her eyes "mermaid eyes." Nkem starts cutting her hair and as she does, she... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
Later that night, Obiora calls. He asks Nkem about the children and then has to hang up to take... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Obiora, though, took Nkem to dinner and told her she'd learn to love the wine. She... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Nkem thinks about Amaechi's arrival in America. She tells Amaechi that Obiora has a girlfriend in Lagos. Amaechi is shocked and asks how Nkem knows. Nkem explains... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
Amaechi says that Nkem will discuss the matter with Obiora, and he'll ask his girlfriend to move out. She continues, saying that Nkem will forgive... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
...hasn't waxed her pubic hair. The children are quiet. At the airport, the children hug Obiora. Obiora comments that Nkem has cut her hair. (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
That night, Nkem studies the first original piece of art Obiora has ever brought. He's excited about it, and Nkem asks Obiora if the people who... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Colonialism and Violence Theme Icon
Obiora says that long hair is better on a Big Man's wife. Nkem watches him stretch... (full context)
Women, Marriage, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Family and Lies Theme Icon
...shower, Nkem says that they need to find a school for the children in Lagos. Obiora stares at her as she says that they're moving back. She wonders if Obiora liked... (full context)