Analysis Of Alan Paton 's Cry, The Beloved Country Essay

Analysis Of Alan Paton 's Cry, The Beloved Country Essay

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I am leaving South Africa. I have lived here for 35 years, and I shall leave with anguish. My home and my friends are here, but I am terrified. I know I shall be in trouble for saying so, because I am the widow of Alan Paton.

Fifty years ago he wrote Cry, The Beloved Country. He was an unknown schoolmaster and it was his first book, but it became a bestseller overnight. It was eventually translated into more than 20 languages and became a set book in schools all over the world. It has sold more than 15 million copies and still sells 100,000 copies a year.

As a result of the startling success of this book, my husband became famous for his impassioned speeches and writings, which brought to the notice of the world the suffering of the black man under Apartheid.

He campaigned for Nelson Mandela 's release from prison and he worked all his life for black majority rule. He was incredibly hopeful about the new South Africa that would follow the end of Apartheid, but he died in 1988, aged 85.

I was so sorry he did not witness the euphoria and love at the time of the election in 1994. But I am glad he is not alive now. He would have been so distressed to see what has happened to his beloved country. [Without Apartheid]

I love this country with a passion, but I cannot live here any more. I can no longer live slung about with panic buttons and gear locks. I am tired of driving with my car windows closed and the doors locked, tired of being afraid of stopping at red lights. I am tired of being constantly on the alert, having that sudden frisson of fear at the sight of a shadow by the gate, of a group of youths approaching—although nine times out of 10 they are innocent of harmful intent. Such is the suspicion that dogs us all.

Among my...


... middle of paper ...


...there.

"You see," he said, "I know of no other way of life than this. I cannot imagine anything different."

What a tragic statement on the beloved country today.

"Because the white man has power, we too want power," says Msimangu. "But when a black man gets power, when he gets money, he is a great man if he is not corrupted. I have seen it often. He seeks power and money to put right what is wrong, and when he gets them, why, he enjoys the power and the money.

Now he can gratify his lusts, now he can arrange ways to get white man 's liquor. I see only one hope for our country, and that is when white men and black men, desiring neither power nor money, but desiring only the good of their country, come together to work for it.

I have one great fear in my heart, that one day when they are turned to loving, they will find we are turned to hating."

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