Cry the Beloved Country by Alan Paton
Cry the beloved Country is a novel by Alan Paton embeded in pre apartheid South Africa. Throughout this time there were rising racial tensions in South Africa and the country was becoming a growing number of divided. The setting for this book remains in several locations, first it starts in a little rural town of Ndotsheni and after that in Johannesburg. Black individuals during this time were only permitted inexperienced jobs and had to bring a pass. Black people were residing in an unequal and unjust society in South Africa while the whites lived well and oppressed the black, not everybody is guilty and not everyone is innocent. The story has to do with the reconciliation of 2 fathers and their sons, the book reviews the vicious circle of inequality and injustice and the suffering of black people during their struggle however, and it informs the story from both sides.
For many individuals life was tough and a majority of the population did not have a well-paying task and even a job at all. This is apparent in the start of the book where the main character Stephen Kumalo sets about his daily life in the rural town of Ndotsheni. Kumalo works as a priest at the regional church and is a guy of individuals he is a really kind and loving person and tries to assist anywhere he can. There are not any tasks in Ndotsheni and even if you work it does not pay well. Much of the youth living in Ndotsheni that are old sufficient to work move elsewhere to find tasks. One of the primary centers in South Africa is Johannesburg; it is one of the country’s most significant cities and is where the majority of people go to find work this is why it is stated “all roadways lead to Johannesburg”. Many people from all over the country go there to look for work among other reasons however there many people “They go to Johannesburg, and there they are lost, and no one hears them at all”. This is what happened to Kumalo’s son Absalom and his sis Gertrude.
When people went to Johannesburg searching for work not everybody got a job due to the fact that a lot of people went to the city and there were not enough jobs for everyone. Crime became a big problem since of this; numerous boys turned to it to manage in life or simply to make ‘simple cash’. Kumalo travels to Johannesburg to find his son Absalom and his sister Gertrude. As soon as he arrives in the city he is robbed of some cash, this shows the difference in between Kumalo’s good rural town and the unwelcome, criminal activity ridden city of Johannesburg.Kumalo finds that his trusting and kind Christian beliefs have actually made him an easy target for adjustment. He soon realises this and begins to enjoy his back. As soon as Kumalo satisfies his son and sis he states the tribe is broken which they can not go back to their old ways. They have to proceed and make a new way of life however the oppression of black individuals stops this.
During the course of the story religious beliefs is brought up numerous times about how it is the only thing that is keeping the nation together and how it is the one of the important things that will bring the country forward. Some characters such as Kumalo’s bro John say that faith is corrupt and that it is contributing to the state of the country. He states the bishop praises equality and desires an end to the injustice but the bishop has a life of high-end since of the injustice.The story likewise reveals there is great in the church with the character Theophilus Msimangu; he is Kumalo’s host and guide in Johannesburg and has an understanding of the people, he is kind, warm, simple and generous, he has the clearest understand of South Africa’s injustices. Msimangu says that “I have one fantastic worry in my heart, that a person day when they are turned to loving; they will discover that we are relied on hating”. He dreams of a better South Africa, one bound together by Christianity however he fears that black individuals might not forgive the whites for what has been done to them. After Kumalo fulfills his brother John who is a public figure who speaks up against the white federal government, he realizes his bro is corrupted with power. Individuals who do not know how to utilize power for good can get damaged easily and utilize it for bad things, this is what the white people are afraid of if they provide black individuals power. Throughout Kumalo’s journeys he suffers numerous challenges; he turns to his beliefs for solace.
In conclusion the reconciliation of 2 dads and their boys and the vicious cycle of inequality and oppression and the suffering of black individuals during their battle is the repeating theme, during the course of the book the battle of the people is communicated to us in the story of Kumalo, Absalom, Jarvis and the rest of the characters. Religious beliefs plays a huge part in society and can either blind people to the oppression that is going on or show everybody how bad oppression is which the church is there for individuals to help them in time of requirement.