Cry the Beloved Country: Major Works Data Sheet

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Major Works Data Sheet Title: Cry, the Beloved CountryAuthor: Alan PatonDate of Publication: 1948Genre: Social Criticism | Relevant Biographical Information About the Author: * White * Born in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa in 1903 * Father was Scottish and mother was South African of English heritage * Worked at a reformatory with black youths | Historical information about the period of publication: * South Africa already colonized by Europeans * Rampant racism * Introduction of apartheid in 1948 | | | Characteristics of the Genre * Show author’s disenchantment with a certain aspect of society * Deals with racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. * Usually a call for action, to get readers to support a cause or …show more content…

* Also talks about how the non-understanding, empowered whites have destroyed the traditional way of living and its effect on the black population and the country as a whole. | Characters | Name | Role in the Story | Significance | Adjectives | Stephen KumaloJames JarvisAbsalom KumaloArthur JarvisTheophilus MsimanguJohn KumaloArthur’s sonNapoleon Letsitsi | Main character throughout most of the novel.The other protagonistStephen’s sonJames’s sonStephen’s friend in JohannesburgStephen’s brotherArthur’s sonAgricultural helper in Ndotsheni | Priest of Ndotsheni, Absalom’s fatherLandowner, Arthur’s fatherKills Arthur, is hanged for itWorks to help blacks, great reformer, killed by AbsalomHelps Stephen find Absalom, retires to monasteryOrator for civil rightsSpeaks Zulu with Stephen, gets milk to NdotsheniSent by James to help save Ndnotsheni’s drought-ruined fields | Quiet, humble, imperfect, blackUnderstanding, forgiving, open to change, whiteCowardly, lacks moral compass, confusedIntelligent, “bright,” caring, independentKind, bitter, generous, sees things clearlyGreat “Bull voice,” selfish“Bright” like his father, caring, precociousSmart, creative, determined | Setting(s)The small country village of Ndotsheni and the city of Johannesburg, South Africa, in the 1940s, pre-Apartheid, World War II. | Significance of Opening SceneDescribes the landscape and beauty of South Africa, showing both Paton’s and Kumalo’s attachment to the African land