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Compare and Contrast Fathers

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Period 2, AP Literature and Composition 4/8/08 Cry, the Beloved Country is a story about two fathers and their sons, and their intertwining lives. Book I is about Stephen Kumalo and his journey to save his family members from the corruption of a major city, Johannesburg. Initially, Kumalo is drawn to the city because of a letter he had received, stating that his sister was ill. The focus of the plot quickly changes when the reader learns that Kumalo's son, Absalom is in jail for murder. The story changes in Book II. The focus is on James Jarvis, a white farmer who is ignorant to any social injustices to the native Africans. ...read more.


Jarvis had never really taken interest in what Arthur had done for a living but when he died, Jarvis spent some time in his study. In his study he found letters, notes and books that helped him to learn who his son really was. He took an interest in Arthur's fight for justice, for equality. It helped him grow closer to his son, regardless of his death. Kumalo hardly knew his son, as well. When Absalom went to the city of Johannesburg, he lost all contact with his son. He had no clue where he even was. When Kumalo goes into the city to retrieve Gertrude, he decides to seek out his son as well. ...read more.


He had a pregnant girlfriend that Kumalo knew nothing about. Kumalo begins to make plans as the situation gets deeper and deeper. He plans to marry Absalom and his girlfriend, and to find a lawyer and fight the case in court. Both men handled each situation differently, but both are prepared to take action. They are connected through their son's actions, otherwise they would have never known each other. Stephen Kumalo is respectful and civil when he visits Jarvis, and confesses that his son killed Arthur. Neither is anger, there is no conflict between them. Jarvis is a broken man, having lost his son to a murderer. Kumalo is shamed, his son is a killer. They are brought together by fatherhood and the sadness that comes with losing a child, regardless of the circumstances. ...read more.

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