Explain how the behaviour of some characters affects the welfare of the majority in the society
With reference to two novels you have read under this section, explain how the behaviour of some characters affects the welfare of the majority in the society. Give four points from each novel.
Characters are people or other inanimate beings that take part in a literary work. Some characters portray the behaviors that affect the welfare of others in the society. This statement can be explained by using the novels “UNANSWERED CRIES” by O. Conteh and “PASSED LIKE A SHADOW” by Bernard Mapalala.
To start with “Unanswered cries” the author has shown the following. Starting with UNANSWERED CRIES the author has shown how the behaviour of some characters have affected the welfare of the majority.
The superstitious behaviour of Ya Posseh and bondo women affects the welfare of the society. While other people are struggling to stop Female Genital Mutilation, Ya Posseh leads the bondo women to support it in the name of ancient superstition.
They believe in bondo spirits to be able to harm anybody who challenges this practice. By so doing the lives of many young girls are put in danger/at risk.
The womanizing behaviour of Ade Jones affects his family. Ade Jones is not faithful in marriage. He sleeps with many girls and women. He even impregnated Makalay and bears Olabisi through premarital sex.
This makes him irresponsible in taking care of Olabisi who starts premarital sex as her father but Ade is not aware. This affects the welfare of the child for lacking Parental guidance and care.
The money mongering behaviour of Salaam Sessay affects the welfare of the majority. People like Salaam are dangerous in the society because they support a cruel custom just to get money.
He is a lawyer by profession and possibly informed of the potential dangers of FGM but in the court he supports the bondo women to force Olabisi to be circumcised. This behaviour affects the welfare of the majority in the society.
The hypocritical behaviour of Makalay affects the welfare of the society. She believes that FGM helps to reduce sexual appetite to girls and makes them committed to their husbands.
But she fails to explain why FGM failed to make her committed to Ade as she conceived Bisi at the tender age of 16 years, and out of wedlock. Later she moved again to Dauda. Although she is educated, she uses her education in a negative way.
Turning to the novel “PASSED LIKE A SHADOW” the author has shown the following:
The drinking behaviour of Adyeri affects his family. Adyeri becomes a hopeless heavy drunkard after losing the job. This makes him unable to provide for the family food bills and the family suffers.
He also becomes so mean and hot tempered and beats both his children and his wife. This causes serious misunderstanding in the family and the welfare of the family is affected.
The Jealous behaviour of Amoti affects the welfare of Vicky. Vicky brings home a man called Akena who wants to marry her. But because of the jealousy of Amoti she declares that Vicky cannot marry a man from another tribe (Munyamahanga).
This makes Vicky hopeless and forces her to run away from home to find another means for survival. She engages in prostitution and puts her life in danger.
The promiscuous behaviour of David, his father, and Adyeri affects many people including Atwoki. David and his father use their money in a negative way. They use it to get women and sleep with them.
They are HIV positive and spread it intentionally. Their behaviour end up ruining Atwoki by affecting his future dreams completely. He ends up getting HIV instead of becoming a reputable footballer.
The womanizing behaviour of Atwoki affects his family and his country in general. Atwoki becomes a womanizer influenced by David. This makes him neglect his family. His mother becomes sick but he doesn’t care.
She dies and is buried but he doesn’t care. After getting HIV he comes back home, hopelessly. The country depended on him but now he has nothing for which to hope.
Superstitious behaviour of Aliganyira affects Vicky. Vicky is married to Aliganyira but they fail to get a child. Aliganyira being superstitious forces Vicky to visit the witch doctor to help them get a child. This affects Vicky’s welfare because instead of getting the child she gets HIV and dies of the same.
Superstition is one of the customs that affect the welfare of the majority as many get HIV through sharing sharp unsterilized instruments.
Therefore, it can be seen that when some people force their interests on others or use their power to do what they wish, it may affect the welfare of the majority. People ought to assess everything they do by considering what effect it will have on others. Will it affect others positively or negatively? Unless otherwise there may arise unnecessary conflicts in the society.
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