Cry, The Beloved Country: A Walk Of Life Essay, Research Paper
Cry, the Beloved Country: A Walk of Life
By Dane Dressler
Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton, stands out from other
summer reading. Having read this novel two years ago, I am able to reflect on how many concepts and ideas expressed in this book have changed in meaning. In this light, several aspects of this book have made it my favorite of summer reading because I read and learned about part of life’s’ cycle. This book represents a walk of life.
First, I feel strongly that the main character, Kumalo, and his travels symbolize a walk of life. I am slowly maturing to understand a life track. Kumalo travels from a life of simplicity in his village (childhood) into a world of many complexities (adulthood). I was able to identify with Kumalo because he and I are both venturing into a world unknown to us.
Second, in the walk of life we can go astray or deviate from an intended goal to end up with something better in life. Kumalo locates his sister to discover she is a prostitute with a child. Planning to take his sister home after finding his son, she leaves the child and disappears. Beginning his journey looking for his son, he returns home with a child, saving him from a life in the city where crime is one of very few choices for his future.
Finally, lines are drawn in the family between Kumalo and his brother. Similarly, I am beginning to draw lines in my family as I begin to understand issues and problems I could not understand earlier. John Kumalo (Kumalo’s brother) is a big politician in Johannesburg. There is much conflict between the two brothers because of all their differing beliefs. When the trial comes for the sons of these two fathers, John Kumalo forgets family and maybe even the truth, and puts the penalty of killing a white on the head of his brothers son. This sets the two brothers even further apart.
Cry, The Beloved Country is an excellent story of family and growing. It is a great book on life and change. I learned so much about what I might expect in the years to come and the life I want to lead. And I know that deviating from that plan may not be bad.