Literary Analysis of Cry, the Beloved Country

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March 6, 2013 Block 1 The Evolution Of James Jarvis South Africa is a place where anyone's life can change in the blink of an eye. This is especially true for the natives who have been facing harsh discrimination ever since whites have taken over their beloved country. Some die because they are starving to death while most whites prosper because of the cheap labor from these native people. But the man's life who changes the most in this story is not a native; he is a white man. James Jarvis changes drastically throughout Cry, The Beloved Country. He goes from being a racist white farmer who is fairly wealthy, to giving just about everything he has to the native causes his dead son was fighting for. In the beginning of the novel, James Jarvis fails to understand his son and the problems in South Africa. It is obvious from the beginning that James Jarvis is quite racist because he does not agree with his son's opinions. While talking to Mr. Harrison he says,"My son and I didn't see eye to eye on the native question, John. In fact, he and I got quite heated about it on more than one occasion" (170). This conversation shows Jarvis' racism and how it upset his son to the point where they would yell at each other over it. All Arthur Jarvis was trying to do was to get his father to understand his views on natives of South Africa. James Jarvis was very disconnected from his son's life. This is shown again later in his conversation with Harrison when Harrison says,"But people liked him too, all sorts of people. You know he spoke Afrikaans like an Afrikaner?" (172). "I knew he had learnt it," (172) replies Jarvis. This response displays the fact that he was no longer a part of his son's life and he probably didn't appreciate his son learning the language in the first place. Shortly after this the author Alan Paton puts a sentence in there that further

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