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"Nervous Conditions" question. Discuss the following passage, in detail, commenting in particular on the presentation of the responses to Nhamos death.

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Q: Discuss the following passage, in detail, commenting in particular on the presentation of the responses to Nhamo?s death. Nervous conditions starts with an interesting and arresting sentence : ?I was not sorry when my brother died.?. Many might think that this novel is about the death of the narrator?s brother. However, as what she explained, ?My (her) story is not after all about death, but about??. Nevertheless, this first sentence foreshadows Tambu?s (the narrator) response to Nhamo?s (her brother) death in this particular passage. In this passage, Tambu once again shows her callousness towards Nhamo?s death. She said that ?I was not sorry that he died?. This is significant because it shows Tambu?s feelings and attitude towards her brother, Nhamo. This quote could also relate to the gender inequality Nhamo pushes forth onto Tambu, similar to their father, Jaremiah. ...read more.


Her inability to mourn him was the outcome of his attitude and relationship towards her. On the other hand, Mainini is devastated by the loss of her son. When Babamukuru and his wife, Maiguru bring the message of Nhamo?s death to her, she senses that something is wrong and begins to scream. She mourns and became what is likely to be seen as ?hysteric?. Mainini?s response to Nhamo?s death might also represent her, standing up to the patriarchal control of Babamukuru. Mainini has no real say over anything in her life, but she does have immediate control of her body. Thus, her ?hysteria? becomes sort of a sign of this resistance. After the unfortunate death of her son, to whom she had worked hard to provide education, she became a negative thinker. Due to his dead son, who had also already forgotten to speak Shona, she considers ?Englishness? a deadly social disease, and so, she is dashed by the idea of losing Tambu too, for she believes that ?Engllishness? destroyed Nhamo. ...read more.


This also shows how Maiguru feels about the idea of the unfair patriarchal society and her entrapment in Babamukuru?s patriarchal control. Women should be equal to men considering the fact that women have quite an equal burden as men. In this passage, we confirmed Tambu?s callousness of Nhamo?s death which she foreshadows earlier in the opening of the novel. Literally, this passage presents the responses to Nhamo?s death. However, we also, get to learn of what Mainini thinks about studying English and her opinion towards the patriarchal Babamukuru and a new side to Mainini which is presented indirectly. We know that Maiguru has a mild personality and is also a good wife and educated as she is a teacher at the Umtali mission school. But, her intelligence is exceeding the expectation and although she did a good job being Babamukuru?s wife, she can?t help it but to show her dissatisfaction towards the patriarchal ideas of gender?s inequality or rather towards Babamukuru even if it?s not direct and noticeable. ...read more.

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