Analysis Of Cry The Beloved Country By Alan Paton

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Social problems plague every generation and even though the circumstances change, society continues to suffer from the same problem that plagued us thousands of years ago. Paton explains that these problems lie rooted in the nature of individuals, and to achieve lasting change one must change how people approach and react to these problems. In Alan Paton’s 1946 social criticism, Cry the Beloved Country, Paton utilizes imagery to emphasize the social problems of broken families and tribe, consequences of poverty, and the repercussions of racism.
The destruction of earth and the family in South Africa is a major problem for the advancement of society. Paton repeatedly describes the intricate relationship between the tribe earth and man:
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Paton describes the conditions of Shanty town as “narrow” and “forgotten”(94). The use of these verbs to help build the picture of poverty faced by the black people of South Africa. Poverty is difficult to describe and understand if you have not seen it first hand. Patons describes the “tragic” and “sad” (94) situation in a way we can understand because, Paton understands poverty is a problem faced by every generation and we can only fix poverty by stopping it at the source. That source of these problems is a broken family and a society with no morals. Arthur Jarvis communicates Paton’s feelings toward the family with his papers “It is not permissible for us to go on destroying family life when we know that we are destroying it”(178). Paton tells us that we know in our hearts what causes poverty, but we ignorant and reluctant to change it. We must change ourselves to have a chance at changing the society we live…show more content…
Msimangu sees the immoral nature of the white society in South Africa: “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” (71). Paton tells us that to change the attitude toward blacks that good white men and good black men must work together. Both the blacks and whites need to forgive each other and move on together for the sake of South Africa. Both the cultures need to reach peace because “white can live without black, and black without white”(109). Paton explains that society cannot exist without the other. Society must learn to embrace the fellow man and not divide themselves for their own good. For if this trend continues, there will be no blacks living with whites, no jobs, and no money for the whites. Blacks and whites must develop a symbiotic relationship for their cultures to survive.
The problems plaguing South Africa effect every generation. We must learn from the past so that we can live at peace with our fellow man black or white. Poverty will never go away, but we must do our best to prevent its growth from our negligence toward the problem. The strength of the family must preserved for the preservations of morals and traditions. Finally, we must move passed superficially judging of people and look inside. Patons use of imagery draws a clear picture to
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