Stephen Kumalo is complacent in his village of Ndotesheni and only realizes the extent of the destruction of the tribal structure after he returns from Johannesburg. James Jarvis is also complacent about the condition of the native people; he chooses to ignore the native question rather than discuss it. By characterizing Jarvis and Kumalo in this way, Paton makes a very important statement: human beings must not wait for a tragic event to occur to confront a critical issue. Jarvis and Kumalo are both very complacent about the native question before going to Johannesburg. In the beginning of the novel, Kumalo does not want to fully acknowledge the extent of the destruction of the tribal system.
Arthur knows that the lack of education and low social status thrust upon the black population is what polarizes the whites and blacks of South Africa’s population. Through this polarization, South Africa’s population becomes afraid of one another, and Arthur knows that he must do something about it. Funnily enough, he falls victim to the very injustices he shines a spotlight to and advocates for. Another victim of the South African society is Absalom Kumalo. When asked why he kills Arthur Jarvis, he doesn’t answer that it is because of his race, or because of what he has done, he constantly repeats “I was frightened, so I fired the revolver”(194).
Along with his diagnosis, Paton in the novel Cry the Beloved Country uses the setting of the land of South Africa to illustrate hope for the oppressed groups, even when all hope seems to be lost. Alan Paton describes how all hope seems lost because of the destruction of the native South African land. He makes it extremely clear from the beginning of the novel that the people must respect and care for the land because it is so beautiful and sacred. Since there is so much racial tension and both races are fighting each other in order to take power, no one is thinking about taking care of the land that is so valuable 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.
He was born to be a failure, to be beneath the white people. His own former teacher believed anything he fought for in this world, was for nothing because of the African American fate. Grant proved this thought wrong by acting out and using the little free will he had to make a difference and do his part in changing the colored people’s future. Battleling through unfair justice and all odds against him in this white-dominated world, he still held himself and continued to help Jefferson even if he himself would not cooperate and ignore his loved one’s actions. He taught Jefferson to see himself as the person he can be, and not the person he was expected to be; to be above anyone else’s thoughts and be the man he was born to be, not the nigger his fate was telling him to be.
Throughout the movie Joe is conflicted about which side he belongs to or who he own his loyalties to. For example, whites gave him the position of a head slave/slave driver which is the biggest position that any slave can have. Also, Joe’s preacher is a man of non-African descent whom he looks to for constant spiritual guidance. Therefore, Joe wants to remain in the good graces of the whites. However, by only aligning himself with the whites he loses the respect of his black peers, but despite this Joe has a strong desire to only be viewed as a white man.
Without the action, the words are meaningless and hold no real value but a shallow lie. Without hope, the people of Ndotshemi, as well as the people of South Africa, would be spiritless and would have no drive to rebuild. Nelson Mandela, as in the real Apartheid, and new ways of efficient manual labor, as in the novel Cry the Beloved Country, have given them a reason to try. In one of Mandela’s speeches, he so eloquently writes: This is our national soul, our compact with one another as citizens, underpinned by our highest aspirations and our deepest apprehensions. Our pledge is to never and never again shall the laws of our land rend our people apart or legalize their oppression and repression.
He also believed that white men could be trusted once they realized that their destinies were bound to the black man's freedom. Mr. King knew that to achieve his goals, his followers would have to unite hands and never walk alone. He also realized that they would have to welcome change and all of the tribulations that came along with it. Mr. King knew that many changes were going to take place in the lives... ... middle of paper ... ...qual and have the same opportunities. They just need to learn how to treat one another.
Msingo conveys a message to Kumalo about his own thoughts of men and power: “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” (Paton 71). Paton portrays that although the people disagree and segregate themselves, hope may to find a way if everyone cooperates. Paton’s use of opposite ideas, which combine, convey the message of how society dies unless everyone of all races works together to revive the peace. No good shall come towards the people unless categorizing individuals changes for the good of the country. If the citizens fail, all discord breaks loose.
The conditions in South Africa during mid-1900 were even worse than they are today. Alan Paton addresses these issues in his novel, Cry, the Beloved Country, published in 1948. Paton uses two contrasting places to present his view of South Africa while suggesting solutions. The desolate village of Ndotsheni and the chaotic city of Johannesburg appear to be dissimilar at first glance, but when one analyzes them, one finds that both places hold stark similarities. The recurring themes include the misuse of the land, the tension between urban and rural societies, and the integration of fear and racism in their lives.
These fictional communities and people are based on the real problem Paton saw in South Africa. The concern of “native crime” by the whites is a result of changes in the social conditions. This change is the cause of the destruction of the tribal structure and the break from the traditional way of life. Colonization changes have lead to the problem of blacks leaving their communities to become a part of the whites’. The tribal system is destroyed by the lost of people to a white would, deterioration of morals and the lack of community.