Study Guide

Cry, the Beloved Country Chapter 7

By Alan Paton

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Chapter 7

  • Even though he's burning through his money pretty quickly, Kumalo has to help his sister to buy clean clothes for herself and her child.
  • Meanwhile, Msimangu arrives to bring Kumalo to his brother John.
  • John welcomes him with a big smile, but he quickly starts dodging Kumalo's questions.
  • His first wife, Esther, apparently left John ten years before.
  • John is now living with a new woman, though they aren't officially married (a big moral warning sign in Msimangu's book).
  • John is happy in Johannesburg, because he has access to power that is out of his reach back in Ndotsheni. Mainly, he wants absolute freedom to do whatever he wants, without people telling him that it's wrong or immoral.
  • Yeah yeah, whatever. Kumalo cuts to the chase: where is Absalom?
  • John gives Kumalo the address of a fabric factory where he thinks that Absalom and John's own son are both working.
  • So Kumalo and Msimangu head out to the factory, but they come up short. Apparently, Absalom hasn't worked there in a year.
  • They follow Absalom's trail until they get a definite address, care of a Mrs. Mkize. They plan to visit Mrs. Mkize's house the next day.
  • Absalom's former landlady Mrs. Ndela strongly hints to Msimangu that Kumalo is not going to be happy with what he finds there.
  • And our sense of impending doom continues to grow stronger and stronger…

Cry, the Beloved Country Chapter 7 Study Group

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