Chapter 16 (CTBC)

Plot ummary

In Cry, The Beloved Country Reverend Kumalo goes to see his son's girlfriend and finds that she is carrying his son's child. He goes there to break the news that his son Absalom is in jail for killing a white man. Rev. Kumalo realizes that the girl is a runaway who has lived with three different men, all of whom including Absalom are now in jail. Then he realizes that there is a pattern because all the men that she has  lived with are now in jail.


  • Rev. Kumalo- the main character in the story (static character)
  • Absalom- Rev. Kumalo's son
  • Absalom's Girlfriend- the girl who impregnated


In  chapter 16 I really didn't find and quotes that I liked, but in chapter 15 I found what father Vince said very interesting. He stated, "Your anxiety turned to fear, and your fear turned to sorrow. But sorrow is better than fear. For fear impoverishes always, while sorrow may enrich... Sorrow is better than fear, said Father Vincent doggedly. Fear is a journey, a terrible journey, but sorrow is at least an arriving." (pg. 140)  This quote means that Man fears the unknown. Fear is never a good thing, It leads to more problems and all of his decisions are lead by fear. Fearing the unknown leads man no where, but when he is to the point of sadness it means he has gotten somewhere. Sadness and mourning mean that man knows what has happened and can grieve about it. It is a strong step because man is able to then accept his problems.

It applies to the book because it shows how Kumalo fear was overriding him. He was worried abut the fate of his sister, the cost of the trip, and the possible adversities he might face.


The theme of chapter 16 is that good things come to those who wait. I said this is the theme because Absalom's girlfriend went through a hard time all her life. Then all of a sudden she meets this man Rev. Kumalo. He offers her something she never had and always wanted.....a family.