When Rain Clouds Gather, by Bessie Head Essay

When Rain Clouds Gather, by Bessie Head Essay

Length: 778 words (2.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In the novel When Rain Clouds Gather, by Bessie Head, the protagonist, Makhaya, deals with suffering, trauma and eventual healing, particularly when he arrives in Golema Mmidi. At the same time, the novel deals with problems of tribalism, greed and hate in a postcolonial state. Throughout the novel, Makhaya attempts to resolve these struggles and create a new future for himself.

We learn from the novel that Makhaya is struggling with several very large struggles. Makhaya wants to live in a country that is free from all forms of apartheid, racial domination and conflict between the rich and poor and the black and white. Makhaya spent his whole life under the apartheid system in South Africa, where offensive terms such as ‘boy’, ‘dog’ and ‘kaffir’ are used when referring to the black people, and attempts to escape this system by crossing into Botswana. “… He simply wanted a country to love and chose the first thing at hand…” (Head, When Rain Clouds Gather, p. 17). He moves into the village of Golema Mmidi which is a unique refuge for Botswana and South African people who are trying to escape the misfortunes of their lives. Makhaya left South Africa for many reasons, one being that if he lived in a free country he thought that “maybe some of the evils in his life will correct themselves” (Head, When Rain Clouds Gather, p. 10). In this journey, Makhaya realises his main aspiration is that of a simple life. “ ... One road might lead to fame and importance, and another might lead to peace of mind. It’s the road of peace of mind that that I’m seeking” (Head, When Rain Clouds Gather, p. 20).

In Golema Mmidi, a place where social norms and values are well respected, Makhaya joins a group of refugees and exiles and becomes involved in...


... middle of paper ...


...man society was sane and normal,” and that he simply had “to come to terms with his society” because it was all he had (Head, When Rain Clouds Gather, p. 164).

We learn that the process of healing and overcoming his struggles encompasses Makhaya working through his struggles by learning to trust and believe in the friends he makes and people he meets in Golema Mmidi. While all of Makhaya’s inner struggles are not fully resolved in the novel, he does comes to terms with who he is and learns to open up to the people around him. It is living within a community, learning to accept that certain things cannot be changed, and living simply that provides a ‘peace of mind’ for Makhaya. While his thoughts may not become quiet, they are soothed by his focus and determination, his involvement in the agricultural programme, his friendships and his relationship with Paulina.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about The Death Of The Rain

- She recognize that smell of wet earth just after it rains. The aroma that can be smelt through open windows or the whiff that hits when you walk outside the door, the ground still wet, water still dripping from the leaves. Drip…Drop. Drip…Drop. That remained Nora’s favourite thing in the world. She stepped outside just after the rain had ceased and just consumed the smell of something so natural that it cannot be stop by any living human or machine whatsoever. She loved to splash in the puddles with her pink gum boots that she had since her feet had stopped growing, at the age of sixteen....   [tags: Water, Rain, Cloud, Weather]

Better Essays
1008 words (2.9 pages)

Analysis On The Man To Send Rain Clouds Essay

- The Man to Send Rain Clouds Readers Reaction This was quite an interesting story. There were three sections to the story which broke the story in three different times in one day. The characters were all very nonchalant except for the priest who showed some emotion when he found out that old Teofilo died. The story kept our interest, however, it did not lead a very clear trail to the end, and there was no real climax where we felt there was a good peak. The story needs to be read more than once to really be appreciated....   [tags: Leslie Marmon Silko]

Better Essays
1549 words (4.4 pages)

The Clouds By Aristophanes, The Apology And The Republic Essays

- The Clouds by Aristophanes, the Apology, and the Republic by Plato collectively demonstrate the hazardous relationship between the philosopher and the city. Each work reveals how Socrates’ method of dialectic inquiry and search for wisdom hindered Athens’ city structure and order. The tension between the city and the philosopher ultimately leads to Socrates’ death. Yet, the jury’s decision does not denounce Socrates as a pious individual. The decision merely represents Socrates’ unwillingness to conform to the Greek traditions and beliefs....   [tags: Socrates, Plato, Philosophy, The Clouds]

Better Essays
1364 words (3.9 pages)

Essay on Aristophanes's The Clouds

- Aside from all the prodigious number of Greek tragedies in history, stands a collection of Greek comedies which serve as humorous relief from the powerful overtone of the tragedy. These comedies were meant to ease the severity and seriousness sometimes associated with the Greek society. The ideas portrayed in the comedies, compared to the tragedies, were ridiculously far-fetched; however, although abnormal, these views are certainly worthy of attention. Throughout his comedy, The Clouds, Aristophanes, along with his frequent use of toilet humor, ridicules aspects of Greek culture when he destroys tradition by denouncing the importance of the gods' influence on the actions of mortals, and he...   [tags: Greek Plays Aristophanes Clouds Essays]

Better Essays
1639 words (4.7 pages)

The Effects Of Rain And Rain On Our Lives Essay

- Snow and rain can provide many benefits, but at the same time hinder and burden our lives and environment. Rain is precipitation that falls down as a liquid from clouds, which can be beneficial to our environment, however, it can be of an annoyance in urban areas. Snow is also a form of precipitation and can provide benefits to the environment, but like rain, it is a concern to those in urban areas. Rain is a part of the water cycle, which provides us with fresh water and can act as a cleanser in nature....   [tags: Precipitation, Water, Rain, Water cycle]

Better Essays
777 words (2.2 pages)

Just and Unjust Speech in Aristophanes' "Clouds"

- Throughout Aristophanes’ “Clouds” there is a constant battle between old and new. It makes itself apparent in the Just and Unjust speech as well as between father and son. Ultimately, Pheidippides, whom would be considered ‘new’, triumphs over the old Strepsiades, his father. This is analogous to the Just and Unjust speech. In this debate, Just speech represents the old traditions and mores of Greece while the contrasting Unjust speech is considered to be newfangled and cynical towards the old. While the defeat of Just speech by Unjust speech does not render Pheidippides the ability to overcome Strepsiades, it is a parallel that may be compared with many other instances in Mythology and real...   [tags: Justice, Aristophanes, Clouds, ]

Better Essays
591 words (1.7 pages)

Acid Rain And Its Effects On The Environment Essay

- What is Acid Rain. Acid Rain is rainfalls made sufficiently acidic by atmospheric pollution that causes environmental harm, typically to forests and lakes. The main cause is industrial burning of coal and other fossil fuels, the waste gases from which contain sulfur and nitrogen oxides, which combine with the atmosphere water to form acid. That basically explained how acid rain is create and what it is. Acid rain basically is form from pollution being polluted to the atmosphere and combine with other little particles containing lots of mixed chemicals in the air which is being absorbed by the clouds, than being marinated together and when it rain that is what’s coming from the clouds not p...   [tags: Oxygen, Water, Rain, Acid rain]

Better Essays
937 words (2.7 pages)

Compare and Contrast: The Man to Send Rain Clouds and Old Man at the Temple

- While reading different stories, you can find many similarities between the texts. For example, Romeo and Juliet and Pyramus and Thisbe are two stories that have many similarities. Throughout the story, the characters have many of the same traits. Similar events take place in the two stories. All these events lead both stories to a tragic ending. Stories can be similar in many ways. The characters, the setting, and the story line itself. Stories can also be very different. One may talk about an event that will break your heart, while another might bring a smile to your face....   [tags: tragedy, religion, hinduism]

Better Essays
588 words (1.7 pages)

Society Versus the Individual in Gather Together in My Name Essay

- Society Versus the Individual in Gather Together in My Name "I reassured myself. I was helping my man. And, after all, there was nothing wrong with sex. I had no need for shame. Society dictated that sex was only licensed by marriage documents. Well, I didn't agree with that. Society is a conglomerate of human beings and that's just what I was. A human being." What we have here from Maya Angelou's novel, Gather Together in My Name, is the basic battle of society against the individual....   [tags: Gather Together in My Name Essays]

Free Essays
451 words (1.3 pages)

Essay on The Clouds

- CLOUDS Production The setting of the Clouds requires two doors in the skene, one representing Strepsiades's house and the other, the Thinkery, both in the city of Athens. The play begins with Strepsiades and Pheidippides sleeping in their beds. Since the ancient Greek theater had no curtain, these two men in their beds had to be carried out in full view of the audience by stagehands (probably slaves) and placed in front of one of the doors of the skene representing Strepsiades's house. The audience was no doubt expected to imagine that this was an indoor scene, because it was not usual for Greeks to sleep outside....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
2187 words (6.2 pages)