A Grain of Wheat study guide contains a biography of Ngũgĩ wa Thiong. provide critical analysis of A Grain of Wheat by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o. A masterly story of myth, rebellion, love, friendship and betrayal from one of Africa’s great writers, Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s A Grain of Wheat. A masterly story of myth, rebellion, love, friendship and betrayal from one of Africa’s great writers, Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s A Grain of Wheat includes an introduction.

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There is a cloud that hangs over the novel, one that has yet to dissipate in the intervening decades. The other would be that all power has the potential to be corrupted, regardless of race, as we see with characters like Robson or the MP that cheats Gikonyo and Karanja.

They cannot find the words to talk about the past, and a wall is created between them. The men who turned their backs on the movement to lick the heels of the whiteman were not brought to justice, but were the first to benefit from a Kenya owned by the black man.

Oct 06, Anne-Marie rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Views Read Edit View history. Uhuru is a Swahili word that means freedom. Betrayallovedeterminismfriendshipand so many other subject has been tackled by James Wa thiong’o. The characters in the book are all dealing with the aftermath of the Mau Mau rebellion, having lost family members or having suffered detention, forced labour and torture. It is and Kenya is on the verge of Uhuru – Independence Day.

His actions and how he sees himself are at the core of the book. Do og truly have self-government if the MP sits in aheat capital taking bribes and enriching wheta, while never paying any attention to his constituency? Return to Book Page.

A Grain of Wheat by Ngugi wa Thiong’o | : Books

No one is left untouched. You don’t know if Mumbi is a woman or a man, or if Karanja is a she or a he. What is most powerful is the narration that focuses on several characters through flashbacks vrain their relation to the British and to the Mau Mau resistance fighters.

Ngugl 30, J. The irony is that by using Kikuyu a native language of Kenya in a play instead of English, he was detained by those lauded heroes who were fighting the British for Kenyan Independence from the British Imperialism and the Colonial language English I’m interested in reading more by him. The characters are complex and feel real. One example to illustrate is that of Thompson, who thinks that ‘ Is it necessary to reject everything from the colonial past, or can some of it be useful?


This is just a joke, but it hides a truth: Truth is one of them. This article needs additional citations for verification. I often found myself flipping back to earlier chapters to confirm that someone frain appeared in more detail later in the book had in fact made a brief appearance in an earlier scene.

In the end it forces you to consider what the independence definition of ngugl hero ought to be, and that people’s decisions were not simply guided by the wheatt of whether to collaborate or to resist during the War of Independence at all times.

A Grain of Wheat by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o

If you decide to read this I’d advise finding an edition other than Heinemann’s, which is ridiculously typo-ridden. Or is this independence only an idealised dream. He delivers a political novel, highly committed, about Uhuru, Freedom, in Decemberand the fight that brought it.

He gives space to the character of each of the people in the village, revealing their motives in all their ambi A Grain of Wheat centres a political narrative about the struggle for independence and liberation in Kenya; about rebellion against British imperialism, and on this level it is searing, laying bare the injustice from the point of view of a richly varied cast of rural Kenyan people.

Sometimes, in some more legendary fragments, going back to the first steps of a liberation movement in the s. It lessens your shame.


Then a martyr and a hero. Firstly whea you get to know Kenya’s history and culture, myths and realities, and secondly you are able to see the humanity in the black “savage” and the inhumanity in the white “cultured” man.

Thiong’o dashes this picturesque vision with images of grief-stricken mothers, of relationships thwarted by war and women selling their bodies for the price of a loaf of bread, of the weight of betrayal wrung by the instinct of self-preservation and the gulf that can open between two people caught in the cyclone of events whirling during the Emergency years.

Looking for beautiful books? It took me a while to digest this book after I finished reading it because like many others have mentioned it contains many interwoven stories and the novel uses a lot of flashback. The story was set in the late s and s and depicted an unhappy love affair in a rural community divided between Christian converts and non-Christians.


Check out the top books of the year on our page Best Books of Kenyan teacher, novelist, essayist, and playwright, whose works function as an important link between the pioneers of African writing and the younger generation of postcolonial writers.

Some of them worked for the British; others fought them.

Written in only three years after independence, t An impressive novel that takes a bit of concentration to figure out the various characters and changes in the time of the event. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

I am no expert on African literature–or any literature for that matter–and bought this as lf blind buy at oof local, pure and simple. Should this need be more important than an individual or than the truth? He gives space to the character of each of the people in the village, revealing their motives in all their ambiguity and mystery. This novel is a stunning portrayal of British colonialism in Kenya in the lead up to Independence.

He left Kenya in and taught at various universities in the United States before he became professor of comparative literature and performance studies at New York University in Societies need heroes, but heroes are by definition super-human.

This is one of the best books I have read in a long time.

This is not an easy book. I want to understand morel lesson for the novel Agrain of wheat. There is a frequent presence, in English, of local words, from “Uhuru”, the swahili word meaning freedom, in particular the political independence of Kenya that is being achieved. The present is much more prosaic and, above all, is full of wounds.

Also, I was just not quite sure what the grain of wheat, whose produce could not be predicted at the time of planting, was exactly.