The River and the Source - Part 5
Q6. Read the extract below and answer the questions that follow.
She felt the weight of injustice that women have felt since time immemorial in her male dominated world. Even a half- wit like her brother-in –law could rob her of her hard earned wealth, and her grandson of his rightful position as the chief, for in all truth Otieno should have held the chief’s stool only until the infant Owour came of age, but it was now clear he had no intention of ever giving up the chiefdom and after his death, his numerous sons would make sure that it stayed in the family. Owour would be outnumbered practically by infinity to one. As it was, his grandmother feared for his life and watched him like a hawk. It was disquieting to have all one’s egg in this one tiny frail basket.
After pondering over her predicament at length Akoko decided to make contact with the sirikal and seek their intervention. The first thing she did was to remove her two year old grandson and take him back to her brother, Oloo in Yimbo. His mother had meanwhile married one of the numerous cousins. In any case she was not the sort of woman to fight for her rights, leave alone her sons’s. All she wanted was a husband and some security, and who could blame her? After all not everybody could be like Akoko.
Before she left she went to see her daughter Nyabera who was in mourning again having lost both her sons to a ferocious outbreak of measles which had raged through her village during the last harvest. She was pregnant again but so downcast and depressed that she stayed in her house, rarely going out and hardly eating. She needed help and her mother decided to spend some time with her before leaving.
She found her daughter thin to the point of emaciation with her belly sticking out before her like an appendage. When she saw her mother still unbent and uncowed by suffering, looking like a woman half her age, she just broke down and wept in her arms as if she was a little girl again.
“Cry my child, for one does not bury a child without burying a apart of one’s soul with it. It is good to cry for who can comprehend the ways of Were? It is for us men to wash away our painful confusion with tears and then to carry on, perhaps there might be some meaning in it all that only glimmers like firefly in a dark night. Who knows but that one day Were will give you a child that lives grows? Yesterday is not today and today is not tomorrow for each day rises fresh from the hands of Were god of the eye of the sun, bringing with it gladness and sorrow, sun and darkness, the two faces of Were; for how can we appreciate light unless we understand darkness? Weep my child and do not hold pain within yourself for it will turn into a snake that devours you from the inside.”
i. what happens immediately before this excerpt? 3 marks
ii. Name two injustices Akoko suffer from her brother-in-law. 2 marks
iii. Akoko and her daughter can be said to be ill-fated. Give reasons using evidence from the extract and elsewhere in the novel. 4 marks
iv. “After all not everybody was like Akoko”. How was Akoko different from her grandson’s mother mentioned in the excerpt? 4 marks
v. (a) Akoko mentions of going to the sirikal for intervention . What did she want intervention? 2 marks
(b) Apart from the sirikal, name other changes that come with the white man. 3marks
vi. Identify and illustrate two stylistic devices used in the excerpt. 2 marks
vii. (a) As Akoko comes to see her daughter Nyabera, she is very expectant. Whom does she give birth to? 1 mark
(b)Akoko comes out as the source of the river. How does this child contribute to the river? 4marks
i. -Owour Kembo dies and his son Owang Sino becomes chief.
- Owang Sino also dies – Owour young brother Otieno Kembo becomes chief.
ii. The injustice that Akoko suffers from her brother-in –law Otieno.
a. He tries to grab Akoko’s personal wealth. √1
b. There is a clear indication that Otieno Kembo had no intention of giving up the chiefdom
when young Owour, Akoko grandson came of age. √1
iii. (a) Akoko loses her husband and the same applies to Nyabera. √1
(b) Akoko’s two children Obura and Owang die young and the same applies to
Nyabera’s children except Awiti. √1
iv. -Akoko does not remarry like her daughter-in –law after the death of her husband. √1
- Akoko could fight for her rights, “ in any case, she was not the type to fight for her rights. √1 2marks
v. (a) She wanted the serikal to force Otieno Kembo to relinquish the chiefdom to young
Owour when he came of age.
(b) The Whiteman came with Taxes, new religion, money and education. 3 marks
vi. (i) Metaphor√1 – she felt the weight of injustice that women…………………√1
(ii) Proverb √1– it was disquieting to have all one’s eggs in this one tiny frail basket. √1 2 marks
vii. (a) she gives birth to Awiti. √1
(b) – Awiti gives birth to children- Becky, Vera, Aoro and other children. √1
- Becky given forth two children with new white husband. √1
- Aoro marries Wandia and have children. √1
- This shows the river gains momentum/ rejuvenates from Awiti. √1 4 marks
Q7. Read the extract below and then answer the questions that follow.
Owuor looked at his grandmother in confusion. Naturally he had thought that his secret was well kept. The confusion became respectful admiration. He should have known that nothing could escape this astute woman.
“Grandmother, you know that I have worked closely with the priest and I feel that I would like to enter priesthood. I want to be a priest.” His grandmother was nothing if not surprising, so he should have been flabbergasted by her reaction but he was.
“ I wondered when you would get the courage to come out with it. You would not be my grandson if you were a coward. You have concluded quite wrongly that I will stand in your way. It is true that I have had hopes that you might one day sit in the chief’s stool that your father and your grandfather once occupied, but things have changed and people are turning to different things. I had also hoped that you would marry and provide many sons to ensure the continuity of the house of Owuor Kembo , but no I will not stand in your way.
However, from now henceforth you shall take your grandfathers’ name so that as long as you live his name shall be heard among the people. You will not be Owuor Sino, but Owuor Kembo. That is all my boy. Do whatever the spirit bids you”.
Owuor could only say weakly; Oh grandmother! The two women smiled at each other over his head.
And so it was that Peter Owuor Kembo, aged fifteen, formally Petro Owuor Sino found himself as seminarian at St. Paul’s Seminary Rakwano. His worldly possessions were few, his academic knowledge haphazard but he had faith in God and therefore in himself and he had love in his heart and the solid love of three women behind him. Finally he had unbounded hope in the future. So what if this hope was rosily cohered by his youthful enthusiasm? One wise man once said that it was better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. In the same vein, it is better to have been buoyed up by hope , the horizon limitless before one, than to have lived in the grey world of timid fearfulness. The course of the world is changed by those who dare to dream. Some dream of wealth and others dream of fame, Owuor dreamt of a life expended in service. He had never really known his father or the joy of a father-son relationship, now dreamt of being the spiritual father of many.
And so he entered the rigors and splendor of life in the seminary. Sometimes when things were particularly tough, he would wonder whether mere blood and flesh would survive it, but it never entered in his mind to leave. If he had learned anything at all at his grandmother’s knees, it was that a job once begun had to be completed. He was no quitter. He would survive. He would see it through. One day he would be Father Peter. Maybe one day a bishop. He was happy to serve Christ anywhere and in anyway.
(a) Explain briefly what happened before the excerpt. 4 marks
(b) Give two character traits of Akoko brought out in this excerpt. 4 marks
(c) Explain how Owuor is considered courageous. 2 marks
(d) What really made Owuor want to become a priest. 2 marks
(e) At the end of the excerpt, Owuor has one wish ‘To become a spiritual father of many’.
Explain what he missed in his father but hopes to get as a father 6 marks
(f) Grandmother, you know that I have worked closely with the priest and I feel that I would like to enter the priesthood. I want to be a priest. (Write in indirect speech). 2 marks
(g) Give one theme evident in the extract. Illustrate 5 marks
(a) Owuor had fully decided to join the priesthood and confided to his cousin Awiti.
Her mother had gone to her home and had stayed for two years and was now back. Owuor told her his wish and together went to inform the all-knowing Akoko.
They found her working in the mission compound where they were staying. 4 marks
(b) Astute – even before Owuor could mention/ report that he wanted to be a priest she (Akoko) knew there was something in the boy since he was hiding all along.
Determined – Akoko did not tire to fight for her rights. She had well informed Owuor his position in the tribe, that he was destined be the rightful heir to the chief’s stool now held by the council of elders (the Jodongo) 4 marks
(c) Owuor is considered courageous in the sense that he knew he was the rightful heir to the
Chief’s stool. He defied without offending Akoko. His passion for the vocation of priesthood was strong. He first told his cousin Awiti who advised him to wait for her mother Maria. When Maria came he informed her. They both went to report to Akoko. Owuor then, without fear announced his intensions to Akoko.
(d) Owuor wanted to become a priest because of the newly acquired knowledge of the mass, catechism teachings and the closeness to the missionary priests as an altar boy. 2 marks
(e) Owuor will miss the powers of a tribal chief and that of head of the Jodongo, marriage and sire children just like his father
- Owuor as a priest will be a father to many. Many will call him ‘father’ since he will be their spiritual mentor and priest of their lives(both children, men and women will be his) 3 marks
(f) Owuor told his grandmother that she knew that he had worked closely with the priests and he felt that he would like to enter the priesthood and become one (a priest). 2 marks
- The whiteman brought the christian religion specifically the Catholic faith which taught the blacks using catechists and the institution of a seminary.
- Various cadres were evident- Christians. Catechists, priest and also bishops.
- Owuor chose not to be the traditional spiritual leader as a chief to become a father in Christianity.
- Religion brought people to God with love in their heart, faith and hope for heavenly possessions rather than worldly possessions of a chief, which can be lost. 3 marks
Q8. Read the extract below and answer the questions that follow.
“For this jewel there can be no price. Therefore we have decided to give her to you free except for a token bull, two cows and six goats with which to funish the requirements of chik. The bull shall come to me in lieu of her father. The two cows and goats will be taken to Yimbo to the house of Oloo her grandmother’s brother who in all ways was a father to the girl and her cousin and always provided for them.” The aspiring suitors stared in disbelief. Held in readiness back in seme were twenty four head of cattle, double the normal bride price which was the least they expected to be asked. Oloo had instructed his uncle to ask for a grace period of six months in which he would have looked for whatever else they would have demanded. And now this. They couldn’t possibly give away such a girl for free. They must have something hidden up their sleeves. But they hadn’t. He was just an incredibly lucky man and it was beginning to dawn on him.
1. Place the excerpt in its immediate context. (4 marks)
2. “For this jewel there can be no price”. Whose words are these? What had led to this response? (4marks)
3. ‘He was just an incredibly lucky man and it was beginning to dawn on him’
Justify this statement. (3 marks)
4. Identify the use of irony in this excerpt and show the significance. (3 marks)
5. Apart from tradition, what is the other main theme depicted in this extract? (2 marks)
6. Give two character traits of the speaker of these words. “For this jewel there can be no price………”
as depicted before and in this occasion. (4 marks)
7. What significant event occurred after this occasion? 2 marks)
8. (i) The aspiring suitors stared in disbelief. Supply the question tag. (1 mark)
(ii) The bull shall come to me in lieu of her father. Explain the meaning of this sentence. (1 mark)
(iii) Who is described as ‘jewel’? (1 mark)
Onyango Silwal had introduced the girls family√1mk to the suitors and the people of Seme requested to be told the bride price. √1mk
The two parties harmoniously conclude the negotiations as food and Kongo flows. √1mk Akoko
engages in a talk with the son-in-law. √1mk
Onyango Silwal. √2mks people of Seme wanted to know the bride price. √2mks
3. Awiti was an educated girl √1mk a teacher √1mk and yet he was asked to pay a token price. √1mk
4. Awiti is an educated beautiful and professional teacher. √1mk expectedly anybody who marries
her would pay dearly√1mk yet the suitors only pay a token bride price. √1mk
5. - Change √1mk (i) unlike in Akoko’s days bride price is no longer elaborate and expensive.
It is a token nowadays. √1mk
(ii) Marriages are friendly and peaceful unlike Akoko’s day when they were characterized
by rivary and tension. √1mk
6. (i) Hypocritical – pretends he is contented to accept token bride price for Awiti yet he was
angry when Akoko and Maria decided they would not demand a hefty bride price.
(ii) Appreciative - describes Awiti as a jewel
(iii) Understanding/ friendly – appears friendly and understanding as he announces the
suitors terms of paying bride price.
(iv) Irresponsible – neglects his duty in raising his brother’s child (Any 2 well illustrated traits @ 2 = 4 marks)
7. That night√1mk Akoko passes on√1mk
8. (i) didn’t they? ( observe punctuation)
(ii) Be given/ get the bull instead of Awiti’s father.
(iii) Elizabeth Awiti
Read the following extract and answer the questions that follow:
“Mother, I have decided to seek the new religion which you have heard about. You know my life is a painful wound to me and much as I try my heart fills with bitterness- for me and for you”.
“ My child, do not feel bitterness for me for I am an old woman who has lived her life. As for you it is better that you seek this new way. It might give you hope and rescue you from bitterness. Bitterness is poison to the spirit for it breeds nothing but vipers some ofwhich might consume your very self. Pain and sorrow all human being feel; but bitterness drops on the spirit likealoes- causing it to wither. I give you my blessing my child. If you are walking along and you find your path leading nowhere, then it is only wise to try some other path.”
“ Thank you mother. I will bring you news as soon as I can. May Were protect you.”
(2)(a) . before this Nyabera had gone to philipo to inquire about the new religion. She had then gathered her things and decided to leave her daughter with her mother n Yimbo. Shei informs her mother of her decision to seek the new religion .Her mother encourage her to go ahead and join the new religion and forget her bitters .Immediately after this Nyabera t ravel s to Aluor mission and join the new religion
(b). Nyabera had suffered a lot in her life because her children had died mysteriously leaving her with only grl child .(Ant) Her husband had died .Ogoma Kwach who had inherited her had gone to his family
(c ). (i). Both had lost their husbands through death
(ii). Their children had died
(iii). They were both sonless
- philosophical – Bitterness is poison to the spirit for it breeds nothing but viper………………………………”
(e). Dialogue – “Mother I have decided……..
Simile – “but bitterness drops on the spirit like aloes ……..”
Use of Non – English Were
(f). Theme of religion – Nyabera decides to seek new religion….
Theme of human suffering - “ You know my life is a painful wound
Q10. Read the excerpt below and then answer the questions that follow.
“Brothers, we greet you and bring you many greetings from the people of seme. My nephew, Oloo, son of my late brother Sigu, came to me and said: “Father, I have found a girl and I want to get married. Now I am a reasonable man and I know the ways of chik, so I asked him: ‘Son I asked him one does not just find a girl in the air. One sends ajwanyo to go and spy a girl and find out her antecedents and character. Is she a thief or a witch? Is she lazy or shiftless? Might there be consanguinity between you and her? Who is her mother and father? I tell you my brothers that I was flabbergasted to hear that none of these things had crossed his mind. He knew that her mother’s name was Maria and her grandmother’s name was Akoko and that was all. You will therefore forgive us because we do not know you and you do not know us. We only came because we have faith in our son who has always been a reasonable man. We therefore wish to introduce ourselves before we go on. I am SemoRakula of Seme, our village is near that strange rock- upon-a-rock, Kit-Mikai. We are the descendants of that wear warrior, Nyagudi Kogambi. Oloo and these young men are my sons and nephew . Oloo is a man of learning and what is more a soldier who has fought for the white man in distant landa Now he is a clerk with a big kambi (company)in Nakuru, where he gets a good salary. So should this suit be acceptable to all you need have no fear that your daughter will starve. I tell you these things because there are things jawang’yo would have found out for you. Thank you brothers.” A pot of kong’o was moved near him and he drew a long refreshing draught. Some things never change-a spokesman needs to irrigate his throat.
“Brothers, people of Seme. My name is Oyange Silwal The girl Awiti is the only child of my late brother Okumu. We are from Sakwa from the village of Gombe, The girl has group in Gem because her mother being a widow and having converted to Christianity decided to settle here which a good thing is because now she is like light for the rest of us. She is highly educated and a teacher of children.
(a) Place this excerpt in its immediate context. (4marks)
(b) Identify and illustrate any three thematic concerns evident in this excerpt. (6marks)
(c) Describe the character of Awiti as brought out in this excerpt, (2marks)
(d) Apart from the case in this excerpt, explain where again there is a compromise in the bride
price later on in the novel. (2marks)
(e) In one sentence, paraphrase the statements below (2marks)
“Brothers, people of Seme. My name is OyangeSilwal The girl Awiti is the only child of my late brother
Okumu. We are from Sakwa from the village of Gombe.
(f) We only came because we have faith in our son who has always been a reasonable man.
Provide a question tag for the above statement. (l marks)
(g) ‘ You will therefore forgive us brothers because we do not know you and you do not know us.’ In light
of what happens in the novel, why is the speaker begging for forgiveness. (2marks)
(h) Identify and illustrate any two stylistic devices evidently used in this excerpt. (4marks)
(i) Give the meaning of the following words and phrases as used in the excerpt. (2marks)
irrigate his throat;
Oyangesilwal tells the people of Seme that Awiti is the only child of his late brother Okumu and that they are from Sakwa from the clan of Gombe
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Blossoms of the Savannah excerpts
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