Throughout my life I have read many novels. This book was very interesting. This is a compelling account of the turbulence that inflamed Kenya in the 1950s and its impact on people’s lives. A brand new perspective upon the emancipation of so-called Third World Country .On the verge of Kenya independence, both colonizers and colonized were bewildered and confused.
White colonial agents lost faith on their lifelong commitment, and Kenyans were cast into a precarious future, which they had been longed for, and at the same time, worried about. National passion became a nostalgia censorship and those who did not contribute to this “exploit” or those who chose to save his own skin or family and betray his to the movement bore a brand “Cain” on their forehead forever. A vivid description of the struggle between nation and individual. Despite Ngugui’s flashback format A Grain of Wheat is certainly an attention keeper. Kenya at the brink of Uhuru (freedom) from the British, as experienced through the eyes of some interesting and greatly entertaining characters. Amazingly in the midst of this historical event the story is filled with love and betrayal.
This is a tragic situation, where there can be no winners. It does not have heroes, heroes do not exist in tragedies- rather it has real people with real feelings, who due to the nature of the system, and their beliefs brought about by years of conditioning must come face to face with brutal realities. The book painfully traces the genesis of the conflict, and as demonstrated with Mugo, everybody is affected, you cannot be a bystander, neither is the people necessarily evil, but rather is as a result of complex situations that comforts them. Though, we do not want to believe, its with the quilt admission by Mugo, that makes him great, and which inevitably starts a healing painful process that must be addressed.
Jomo Kenyatta is played a very important role in the backdrop of the novel A Grain of Wheat Through his role in the history of Kenya, his role in the novel as some what compared to Moses and his influentially book Facing Mount Kenya. Jomo Kenyatta played a vital role in the demanding Kenyan self-government and independence from Great Britain. Together with other prominent African nationalist figures, such as Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Kenyatta helped organize the fifth Pan-African Congress in Great Britain in 1945. The congress, modeled after the four congresses organized by black American intellectual W.E.B. Du Bois between 1919 and 1927 and attended by black leaders and intellectuals from around the world, affirmed the goals of African nationalism and unity.
In September 1946 Kenyatta returned to Kenya, and in June 1947 he became president of the first colony-wide African political organization, the Kenya African Union (KAU), which had been formed more than two years earlier. Recruiting both Kikuyu and non-Kikuyu support, Kenyatta devoted considerable energy to KAU’s efforts to win self-government under African leadership. KAU was unsuccessful, however, and African resistance to colonial policies and the supremacy of European settlers in Kenya took on a more militant tone. In 1952 an extremist Kikuyu guerrilla movement called Mau Mau began advocating violence against the colonial government and white settlers. Never a radical, Kenyatta did not advocate violence to achieve African political goals.
Nevertheless, the colonial authorities arrested him and five other KAU leaders in October 1952 for allegedly managing Mau Mau. The six leaders were tried and, in April 1953, convicted. Kenyatta spent almost nine years in jail and detention. By the time he was freed in August 1961, Kenya was moving towards self-government under African leadership, and Kenyatta had been embraced, as the colony’s most important independence leader. Shortly after his release, Kenyatta assumed the leadership of the Kenya African National Union (KANU), a party founded in 1960 and supported by the Kikuyu and Luo.
He led the party to victory in the pre-independence elections of May 1963 and was named Prime Minister of Kenya in June. Kenyatta led Kenya to formal independence in December of that year. Kenya was established as a republic in December 1964, and Kenyatta was elected Kenya’s first president the same month. Jomo Kenyatta played a vital role in A Grain of Wheat. He did not play a main character he played the issued by being a major player in the movement that was going on in the novel .In the being of the novel (pg.14), a movement meeting in Rung’ei Market was very crowded because it was rumored that Kenyatta would appear. In the novel when anyone saw they always made a big deal about it.
Jomo Kenyatta was thought of as Moses because the people (Africans) were behind him. At the end he did lead the people through the water (British). He was also thought of as Moses because of his time behind bars and his triumph to the Kenyan presidency. Facing Mount Kenya is one of the first really competent and instructions contributions to African ethnography by a scholar of pure African Heritage. Through his upbringing Mr.
Kenyatta combines to an unusual extent the knowledge of Western ways and Western modes of thought with a training and outlook essentially African. As a first-hand account of a representative African culture, as an invaluable document in the principles underlying culture-contact and change; last, not least, as a personal statement of the new outlook of a progressive African, this book will rank as a pioneering achievement of outstanding merit.” ‘Facing Mount Kenya’ is a central document of the highest distinction in anthropological literature, an invaluable key to the structure of African society and the nature of the African mind. ‘Facing Mount Kenya’ is not only a formal study of life and death, work and play, sex and the family in one of the greatest tribes of contemporary Africa, but a work of considerable literary merit. The very sight and sound of Kikuyu tribal life presented here are at once comprehensive and intimate, and as precise as they are compassionate.
In conclusion, Jomo Kenyatta played a vital role in the novel A Grain of Wheat. A Grain of wheat was a vey interesting and long book . It takes the reader into the minds of people who lived through the struggle to liberate kenya. It takes there loyalty and some of the characters non-chalet attitude.