Cry the beloved country essay titles

Cry the beloved country essay titles

Cry, The Beloved Country Essay Topics & Writing Prompts

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph. D. in curriculum and instruction.

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Why Cry, the Beloved Country Essays?

Have you ever thought about how to make the most out of your students’ experience with a novel? For many students, Alan Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country is their first encounter with South African history and the devastation of apartheid. The novel tells such a compelling story and raises so many complicated, interconnected themes, such as the intertwined roles of race and class in identity development, the way traumas transmit across generations, and the value of geography to a person’s life.

Essay Topics and Prompts

One way to make sure that your students think deeply and critically about this text is to have them write essays once they are finished reading. By writing essays, students will have to elaborate their own points of view and develop theories and voice in relation to the novel. Students will have to look back to the text to find evidence to support their most significant ideas. Writing essays is not only a great way to practice critical thinking; it also lets students practice the writing process itself. The essay topics and prompts in this lesson are all oriented around a closer and more analytic understanding of Paton’s important novel.

Focus on the Characters

Characters can make a text come alive. These questions focus around characters and their worldviews.

Stephen Kumalo.

Write an essay describing the character of Stephen Kumalo. Choose three to five major characteristics to highlight about Kumalo, using specific evidence from the text to back up your argument. Be sure to describe how Kumalo changes internally over the course of the text, using quotes from both the beginning and the end to justify these changes.

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Published bySamson Ryan Modified over 2 years ago

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Presentation on theme: «EXPLORING MODERN CONNECTIONS TO CRY, THE BELOVED COUNTRY Essay Tips.»— Presentation transcript:


2 Introduction Paragraph  Your creative lead should focus on your theme, not your three texts. Get your audience thinking about the “big idea” you’ll be covering in your essay.  Your thesis statement could look something like this:

3 Sample Thesis Statements  War brings out both the best and the worst in people; Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front, the film Platoon, and Rod Nordland’s article “No Victory Dances” develop this theme and show how Remarque’s work is relevant today.  [theme sentence]; Alan Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country, the film [film title, in italics], and [article’s author]’s article [article title, in quotes] develop this theme and show how Paton’s work is relevant today.

4 Body Paragraphs  Should begin with transition words or devices.  Topic sentences should explain which of the three texts is being covered in that paragraph.  You are analyzing HOW each text develops your theme … so you will use quotes from the texts to illustrate your ideas!

5 In-Text Citations  Novel  (Author’s Last Name Page Number)  (Paton 101)  Movie  (Title of Movie)  (Magnolia)  Article  (Author’s Last Name Page Number [if applicable])  (Miller 5) OR (Miller)

6 Conclusion Paragraph  Your conclusion should focus, again, on your theme, but it should also discuss how Paton’s work is still relevant today.  Remember to restate your thesis.

7 Works Cited – Novel  Last name, First name. Title of Work. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year. Medium of Publication.  Shakespeare, William. The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. Austin: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 2007. Print.

8 Works Cited – Movie  Title. Director. Film Main Performers. Original Release Year. DVD or VHS. Distributer or Studio, Release Year of your version.  Ed Wood. Dir. Tim Burton. Perf. Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker, Patricia Arquette. 1994. DVD. Touchstone, 2004.

Cry, the Beloved Country

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Cry, the Beloved Country, novel by Alan Paton, published in 1948.

Hailed as one of the greatest South African novels, Cry, the Beloved Country was first published in the United States, bringing international attention to South Africa’s tragic history. It tells the story of a father’s journey from rural South Africa to and through the city of Johannesburg in search of his son. The reader cannot help but feel deeply for the central character, a Zulu pastor, Stephen Kumalo, and the tortuous discoveries he makes in Johannesburg. It is in a prison cell that Kumalo eventually finds his son, Absalom, who is facing trial for the murder of a white man—a man who ironically cared deeply about the plight of the native South African population and had been a voice for change until his untimely death. Here we meet another father, that of the victim, whose own journey to understand his son eventually leads to his life and grief becoming strangely entwined with Kumalo’s.

The novel captures the extremes of human emotion, and Alan Paton’s faith in human dignity in the worst of circumstances is both poignant and uplifting. The novel shows the brutality of apartheid, but despite its unflinching portrayal of darkness and despair in South Africa, it still offers hope for a better future. The novel itself is a cry for South Africa, which we learn is beloved in spite of everything; a cry for its people, its land, and the tentative hope for its freedom from hatred, poverty, and fear.