Language and Style in Betrayal in the city - Allusion
Allusion refers to reference to something or someone else without the context of a given text.
The writer makes several allusions in reference to the Bible.
When Jere canes his cell mate as they act out the part of Jesus Christ and Pilate, he finds himself in trouble when the cell mate cries out.
He is stripped naked and caned. He tells them it was a case of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. This is a verse in the Bible.
The above story is an allusion to the Biblical crucification of Jesus.
Many citizens of Kafira have been crucified innocently just like Jesus and many others are the pilates that beat up Christ.
Doga, Nina and Kabito are among those who die needless deaths. The pilates are exemplified by the likes of Boss and Mulili.
Mosese alludes to the biblical inheritance of the Kingdom of heaven in reference to their high expectations after independence.
When they are told that their kingdom (independence) has come, it turns out to be an allusion.
Mosese also alluded to the bible when he says ‘……the last shall be first and blessed are the poor for they shall inherit the kingdom of heaven.’
(pg 27) Mosese questions the validity of this bible verse by pointing out the disappointment of the masses.
He is disillusioned that people had placed their hope in Boss’ regime, only to be disappointed by the turn of events.
Boss tells Jusper that when he was acting, he used to be given bad roles.
He would die for mistakes that were not his.
Jusper tells him, “I would say it’s sacrifice” A kind of death for a future. The sort of role Christ played’ (pg 66)
While referring to this mother, Mosese tells Jere, “once every year she slaughtered a cock to mark the birth of Christ” (pg 28) Christmas is alluded here.
Betrayal in the City by Francis Imbuga
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