Immagine dell'autore.

Alan Paton (1903–1988)

Autore di Cry, the Beloved Country

49+ opere 11,231 membri 204 recensioni 16 preferito


Political activist Alan Steward Paton was born on January 11, 1903 in Natal, South Africa. He attended Maritzburg College and Natal University. He taught at Ixopo High School and Maritzburg College. In 1935, he was appointed principal of Diepkloof Reformatory for African Boys in Johannesburg and mostra altro became interested in race relations. Although he intended to become a full-time writer after the publication of his first book, he instead became involved in politics. He was a member of the Liberal Party of South Africa, serving as vice-president, chairman, and president before the party was forced to disband in 1968 because of its anti-apartheid views. Paton is best known for his political activism and his first novel, Cry, the Beloved Country. He also wrote a second novel, Too Late the Phalarope, and two autobiographies, Toward the Mountains and Journey Continued. He died on April 12, 1988 in Lintrose, Botha's Hill, Natal. (Bowker Author Biography) mostra meno

Opere di Alan Paton

Cry, the Beloved Country (1948) 9,417 copie
Too Late the Phalarope (1953) 680 copie
Instrument of Thy Peace (1967) 225 copie
Tales from a Troubled Land (1961) 117 copie
Debbie Go Home (1961) 75 copie
Hofmeyr (1964) 13 copie
Save the Beloved Country (1987) 10 copie
The Long View (1968) 8 copie
The Hero of Currie Road (2008) 4 copie
Selected Letters (2009) 4 copie
South Africa 2 copie
Apartheid 1 copia

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I don’t have the words to express how much this book touched me. I’ll be thinking about this for a long time to come. Just read it.
milbourt | 182 altre recensioni | May 11, 2024 |
#ReadAroundTheWorld. #South Africa

This story was written in 1946 by White South African author Alan Paton, and published in 1948 on the eve of the creation Apartheid in South Africa. It is a classic work of protest literature, focussing on the evils of racism, exploitation and colonialism. Paton later started the Liberal Party in South Africa which opposed apartheid. This book was first published in the US as it was unlikely to be published in South Africa at the time.

The story takes us to the village of Ndotsheni in Natal, where Stephen Kumalo, a Zulu minister, is called to go to Johannesburg to see his sister who is ill. Sadly he finds she has become involved in selling liquor and prostitution. He then seeks to find his son Absalom who he eventually discovers in jail having shot and killed a white man. Despite the heartbreak Kumalo must find a way to go on, to fight for the plight of his people and his village.

The book moves between the gentle conversations of Kumalo and some paragraphs questioning where South Africa is headed and the tyranny of the oppression of black people in mines, in the villages and the squatter camps of the metropolis.

This was a moving story, well-written and impacting. The tone is mildly patronising at points, which doesn’t surprise me given it was written nearly eighty years ago, but Paton takes on the important role of becoming a whistleblower on an international level, revealing what was going on in South Africa. You can sense his passion for the country and the vehemence of his beliefs about the evils of racial segregation and exploitation. This is an important work cutting to the heart of a great tragedy.
… (altro)
mimbza | 182 altre recensioni | Apr 7, 2024 |
I had read that, as popular as Cry, the Beloved Country is, this work (published in 1953) is generally considered his best. Having only read these two novels and a collection of Paton’s short stories, I don’t know if I have enough familiarity with his work to pass judgment but I will say that this is a very impressive work. Paton succeeds brilliantly in getting into people’s minds and it is hard to imagine that his ability to do so or his understanding of how people think could be improved upon. It is not a surprise that Paton was brought up in the Christadelphian Church, a sect that believes in the absolute primacy of the Bible, among other things. His very deep knowledge of the Bible comes through on every page. More than intellectual familiarity with what the lines in the Bible say, Paton demonstrates a profound understanding of the complexity of human beings, of good and evil, and of the nature of shame, honesty, and acceptance. Indeed, much of the book is a meditation on belief and how it does (versus how it “should”) govern our behavior. The novel is the story of an upright young (white) police officer who transgresses the color line in apartheid South Africa in the 1950s. The act is not only a serious legal problem but far more so a family problem as he is from an old Boer (Dutch) family with strict cultural and religious standards. What happens is almost impossible to see happening any other way and Paton’s telling of the story, both in how and what people do as well as how and what they think, is masterful. He is especially impressive at depicting the conscience at work. Though I understand the compelling nature of Cry, the Beloved Country, I cannot understand why this novel isn’t far better known.… (altro)
Gypsy_Boy | 14 altre recensioni | Feb 16, 2024 |
Serious "white guy writing about black people" vibes here, but undeniably powerful. Also useful as a picture of a place and time.
aleshh | 182 altre recensioni | Jan 12, 2024 |


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