Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Coming home.

As I began to read A Season of a Migration to the North, I was struck by one passage. It is where the narrator has just arrived home and says, “…I heard the cooing of the turtle-dove, and I looked through the window at the palm tree standing in the courtyard of our house and I knew that all was still well with life.” (4) It was that feeling of coming home and everything was as it had always been. It gave the narrator a sense of security for home to feel the same when he got back as it was when he left. It’s like the feeling whenever you’re away from home, or after you’ve moved away, to come back and see things functioning much as they always have; it can give a sense of security.

I feel like this relates to the overall feeling that I seem to be getting from the novel that colonialism changes something that was wonderful in ways that are not good. It takes away from the greatness that was always there to impose what the people conquering in their ignorance feels is better. This also plays to the conundrum that we touched on in class that yes, there were things that the British brought to the Sudan and other countries that were improvements, but at what price and was it worth what they lost in the process?


  1. Also consider does any place truly ever stay the same? What might the narrator be missing here? Why?

  2. I absolutely love that part of the book because, like you said, it's so relate-able. Everyone has experienced that sense of being away from home, then coming back to it and feeling like nothing has changed, like it's been waiting for you the whole time. What you said about this relating back to colonialism makes sense. It's making me wonder though if the tragedies of Mustafa's life can really be blamed on this though. Looking back, it wasn't going to England and becoming Westernized that made Mustafa so cold and unfeeling. From the beginning he lacked normal human emotions as can be seen in his relationship with his mother. So I'm a little confused as to where all that comes from, but I definitely agree there is a colonial influence.