Biblical Allusion in Cry, the Beloved Country Essays

1120 Words Jan 7th, 2002 5 Pages
The use of Biblical allusions and references is evident in Alan Paton's Cry, the Beloved Country. Against the backdrop of South Africa's racial and cultural problems, massive enforced segregation, similarly enforced economic inequality, Alan Paton uses these references as way to preserve his faith for the struggling country. By incorporating Biblical references into his novel, one can see that Alan Paton is a religious man and feels that faith will give hope to his beloved country. Throughout the entire novel, Alan Paton continuously uses references to the bible and while some are not very apparent, most of them are considerable evident. Four apparent references that he uses are seen in Stephen Kumalo's character, Absalom's decisions to …show more content…
Absalom left his family and his town of Ndotsheni in order to move out and live in Johannesburg. Unfortunately, this was not in his best interest. Absalom began to affiliate himself with the wrong crowd. He led a life of robbery and petty crime, and ultimately murder Arthur Jarvis when caught breaking into his house. He was prosecuted and sentenced to be hanged. In his last conversation with his father, he makes a request to name his unborn child Peter if it was born a boy. In the Bible, Peter was an apostle of Jesus Christ. "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead," (I Peter 3). Absalom knows that his time on earth is ending, and he feels that his unborn child is his only chance and opportunity to be vindicated of his sins. He wants his son to grow up in his hometown and live the life that he took away from himself by leaving Ndotsheni. Absalom wants his child not to follow in his footsteps. For these reasons, Absalom wants to name his unborn child Peter with reference to the Peter in the Bible.
When Stephen began his journey to Johannesburg, he was looking for his lost son. John Kumalo would ask him "Have you found the prodigal" (Paton, 128) with reference to the Parable of the Prodigal Son in the Bible. In the Bible it states that a man with two sons lost one after he left to live on his own. After a couple of years, the