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Biblical Rhythm Essay

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Biblical Influences on Cry, the Beloved Country
or:
Cry, the Beloved Country: Like the Bible but Shorter

To anyone and everyone: This is one of the great books! It reads like a lovely poem. Enjoy and reflect.
               --unknown lawyer from Chicago

The owner of the South Haven, Michigan bookstore The Hidden Room discovered this simple yet memorable comment written firmly on a memo card of a noted Chicago legal firm. The card was left in a copy of Alan Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country. From his early childhood, Paton was a lover of language and a devout Christian. As he grew into a masterful poet, writer, and orator, his passions remained with him, a constant influence on his works. This is especially evident in Cry, the Beloved Country, Paton’s first and most highly esteemed novel. Cry, the Beloved Country is the story of Stephen Kumalo, an elderly black parson in a small poverty- and drought-plagued tribal village in the racially torn country of South Africa. He undertakes a journey to the corrupt, terror-ridden city of Johannesburg where he searches, both physically and emotionally, for his son Absalom, as well as his old way of life. From Paton’s use of rhythm to the names he chose for his characters, strong Biblical influence is apparent throughout the novel.
Though Paton incorporates several different oratorical styles in Cry, the Beloved County, the style of the book as a whole is frequen...


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