Cry The Beloved Country By Alan Paton Essay

Cry The Beloved Country By Alan Paton Essay

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Jack Fischer
Ms. Turkowski
English H Period
5 March 2015
Hope for the Oppressed
In the novel Cry the Beloved Country, author Alan Paton tells the story of the breakdown that is occurring in his native country of South Africa and ways in which to fix it. In the novel, the main character Reverend Stephen Kumalo embarks on a mission to the city of Johannesburg in order to find his missing son Absalom. Throughout his journey, Kumalo sees and experiences many injustices that clearly illustrate the growing divide between blacks and whites in the country. Paton incorporates his diagnosis of the racial divide and the reasons behind it. Paton uses the setting of South Africa and relationships of people to illustrate hope for the oppressed groups, even when all hope seems to be lost.
Hope seems lost in South Africa because of the destruction of the native South African land/(and culture?). From the beginning of the novel he emphasizes that the people must respect and care for the land because of its beauty and sacredness. Due to the racial tension and conflict, no one thinks about taking care of the land that is invaluable to the country. Paton stresses the land’s importance by stating, "Stand unshod upon it, for the ground is holy, being even as it came from the Creator. Keep it, guard it, care for it, for it keeps men, guards men, cares for men. Destroy it and man is destroyed" (Paton 33).  The land is sacred because God gave it directly to the people of South Africa. However, what Paton says also foreshadows what happens over time when the people do not take care of the land--their race will end up being destroyed along with the land. The direct relationship between the racial conflict and the land is clearly outlined on the next page ...


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...her side has to say anything. They just need to cooperate with each other. Through the relationship of Reverend Kumalo and James Jarvis, Paton illustrates how there still is hope for the country and he shows a way in which things can be reconstructed.
Paton illustrates clearly how the land of the country and the nation as a whole is in shambles, yet he provides hope for the people. In Cry the Beloved Country, Paton proves through the conflict of the races that the land of South Africa is in grave danger of being lost. However, Paton does have a vision of what can help the country and that is when individuals from different racial groups in the land are willing to take action toward one another and work toward coexisting in peace. Paton 's novel shows that no matter how oppressive life can get between people, there are ways to work toward peace and justice for all.


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