Discussion 9/14

Chapters 8-10

Womanhood – dependence and independence

Tambu struggles between being just a woman and being an educated woman.  We see a transformation in her from being determined to become successful (153-154) to being more or less just another face in the crowd (157).  However, she begins to assert some independent way of thinking when she defies Babamukuru by not coming home on time and refusing to attend her parent’s wedding.  The biggest shift from dependence to independence for Tambu comes when she leaves for Sacred Heart despite what everyone else has to say about it.

Maiguru finally claims some independence when she expresses her true feelings to her husband and decides to leave even though they did not think she would.  However, her new found independence was taken away when she returned home with Babamukura after only a few days. 175-176

The rise and fall of Babamukuru

Babamukuru is constantly challenged in the closing of the novel by various characters.  Tambu defies him, his wife decides to leave, Tambu’s mother blames him for her daughter’s education choices, and Lucia puts him in his place.  Despite his authority being put into question, Tambu says again her uncle is like God.

Questions to ponder

  1. Are the changes in Tambu’s behavior a result of influence from Nyasha or a result of her growing up and being more aware of things?
  2. Did Maiguru make the right choice by coming home with Babamukura, or is it conforming to the ideals of a patriarchal society?
  3. What are your overall opinions of Babamukura at the end of the novel? Does he really have everyone’s best interest at heart or does he want to be in complete control?