The climax of Chinua Achebe’s short story “Civil Peace” is when Jonathan discovers that the iron safe he buried in his backyard during the war has miraculously survived. This discovery is a pivotal moment in the story, as it symbolizes Jonathan’s hope and determination to rebuild his life after the war. The safe contains all of Jonathan’s family’s valuable possessions, including money and important documents, which he had buried to protect them from being stolen or destroyed. The fact that the safe survived the war unscathed is a sign of hope for Jonathan and his family, and shows Jonathan’s resourcefulness and willingness to take advantage of every opportunity that comes his way. The passage that illustrates this climax reads, “Jonathan uncovered the iron safe and opened it. The documents were still there. The money was still there. Even the household treasures, the ancestral dancing masks and the carved ikengas, were intact. Jonathan threw his head back and laughed. He was a rich man again.” This passage represents a significant moment in the story, as it demonstrates Jonathan’s hope and determination to rebuild his life after the war.
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