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Weep Not Chile by Ngugi WA Thiong’O, Book Review Example

Pages: 3

Words: 893

Book Review

This was the author’s first novel of which was published in 1964. Though the novel was originally published in English it was later published in East African. The novel deals with the special and extremist relationship between the British and the Africans with respect to the totalitarian rule of the British monarchy. The novel further deals with the Mau Mau Uprising and the disposition of the entirety of a nation of The novel was written with great anticipation for freedom of the Africans while he was studying at Makerere University. 

Njorge resides in the Mahua village of where he has finality authority in business and personal affairs of the community. “He has two wives Njeye and Naokobi.” (Rukhaya, 2010). His children are born of the first wife and their names are Kori and Kamau and from the second wife Mwangi and Njorge are born. One child works at the Green Hotel and one is an apprentice and sharp carpenter. Mwangi died in battle in the second world war. The brothers share a very dear and close relationship with their mother. Njeri was the second mother and the maternal mother was Nyokabi. Everyone accepted the two mother relationship. The husband is very close to the mother and the children and shows great spirits of affection towards them. The women were sort of fickle and jealous of each other somewhat but Ngotho did his best to keep harmony within the family between the two wives. Njori develops a very strong and lasting bond with Kamau. Kamau did not like Nairobi because he felt he lured his brothers into the city. He further felt a lack of a relationship with his sister. 

After the war Boro changed his life for the better after the loss of Mwangi his beloved brother. “He feels no revolution is justified unless it can bring back his brother.” (Rukhaya, 2010). The entire family puts education as their top priority for uniting each other and keeping a tight knit family. They feel education will put them in the same social class as the Jacobos. Njorge was very attached to his father and believes everything will be okay as long as his father is in his life. The family wants to be on equal grounds with the rest of the colony and feels education is the key to this success. Njorge’s passing of secondary school make him a mentor for the rest of the family. Boro feels much differently about the ideology of family and uprising. He feels the means to ascertain that status is through ownership of land. Boro came home from the war knowing their would be no employment. 

Boro and rest of the family form opposing forces. There are only a few colonizers that feel land is the means to their salvation. “The Jacobos are status of society.” (Rukhaya, 2010). The family is made up of Julian and his three children. Lucia is a prominent school teacher and Mwikiki is a learned student in the United States. The Howland’s represent the colonizers in political and social arenas. Howland further marries Sussana because he wanted a lady of status and one that would move to the United States with him. He is not loving towards his English wife and uses their marriage as a play thing. He satires with black women to fulfill his sexual desires. The hybrid whites had preferential treatment over the other colonizers. As a result of this their offspring received preferential treatment. Njorge and Stephen Howland had a very nice and quaint relationship until the townspeople got involved and turned the relationship into mistrust and seeds of hate. Political, economic and social strains made the colonization at unrest and unstable. The middle stages of the families were especially affected. The political statures more into Ngotho’s family as the novel progresses. Boro tells his son he is being quite submissive to the whites and this causes dissention between them. Ngotho tells Boro not to intrude in his political and social deviations. Later Ngotho becomes dillusioned and becomes submissive. He further accepts that the Jacobos will take over his land as their own. Ngothos loses two of his sons to the war and a third to pure turmoil in the country. His mother and father start to quarrel and this brings unsteady to his life. Religion helps the family become part of communal forces with the rest of all. 

One of the main points of the novel is the political conflict. Fighting for the white people in World War Ngotho and his father came back disappointed realizing that the British are ruling their lands. Natives developed the hatred towards the British and it all lead to the turning point of the novel, once they just couldn`t take it anymore and a conflict occurred. African culture says that the land is the most significant, God  given gift, and it was a matter of honor to retrieve it. “Historically, land is the source of man’s life, the basis of any social community and the foundation of all human culture, remained the sensitive factor in connection between Africans and Europeans in Kenya” (Ime Ikiddeh, 1975: 210)

References

Thiono’O, Nuigi Wa. Weep Not Child. NY: New York  Heinemann, 1987

Ruche, Novel Analysis Nuigi Wa’O Weep Not Child Retrieved November 21, 2010 from, http://www.brighthub.com/arts/books/articles/63452.aspx

“Ngugi wa Thiong’o: The Novelist as Historian. Ibandan: Oxford UP, 1975 

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