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The Rain Came Analysis

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Introduction

The title of the story is The Rain Came by Grace Ogot. The author of the story is Grace Ogot or also known as Grace Emily Akinyi. She was born on 15 May 1930, near Kisumu, central Nyanza Region in Kenya. In achievement, she became the first African woman writer in English who published fiction by the East African Publishing House. Her stories such as Land Without Thunder (1968), The Other Woman (1976), and The Island of Tears (1980) provides the traditional Luo life. Most of her fiction stories are according with the customs, history and traditions of the Luo tribe in Kenya, which has the second largest ethnic group. The Luo tribe lived for most part near Lake Victoria. Her formal writing reflects the addition of her formal learning with the traditions in her life. All her collections of writings reflect her personal love towards the stories of her culture. Grace Ogot passed away in April 2010.

1. Character and characterizations The main character or the primary character is Oganda which means “beans” due to her very fair skin. She is the chief’s only daughter around at the tender age to married and also the protagonist in this story. She is a very traditional and great woman where she willing to sacrificed herself so that the Luo will have rain. She also loves to imagine her future where she imagined which man should be the best man to married. Oganda is very disappointed on her people which they willing to give her up to sacrifice. Lastly, she also a person who easily to give up where she never fight for her life to run away or hide herself but choose to accept the fact that she is the chosen one and ready to be sacrifice.
The supporting character would be Labong’O. He is the chief of Luo. He has 5 wives and 20 children, among all Oganda is his daughter. He is the bravest man and a great leader of the village. He always holds his promise to the village where he promised would sacrifice himself or his family for the sake of the tribe. Other than that, he is also a loving father and loves his daughter very much but he could not bear the risk to safe Oganda. Another minor character would be Minya which is the chief’s fifth wife and Oganda mother. She is a loving mother where she is not willing to sacrifice her only daughter. Grandmother has a characteristic of a protective grandmother where she protect Oganda by not allow her to leave her hut and listen to the truth that she have to be the sacrifice.
Furthermore, Oganda lover which is Osinda, he is a very brave man and would will to do anything to save her lover. In the story, Osinda went into the sacred land to save Oganda and take care of her until she wakes up from the faint. Kech is son of a neighboring clan elder. He is a very handsome guy with sweet meek eyes and roaring laugh but he is too short for Oganda. Dimo, a tall young man which is brave and a great wrestler but he is too cruel where always quarreling and ready to fight. The selfish one would be the villager, friends and relatives where they are so happy that the chief’s daughter have to sacrifice to have rain. They are also very naïve, traditional and believes in animism where they believes sacrifice would bring them torrent of rain. Another supporting character is the little child which is very naïve. The little child broke the silent and gives the earring to Oganda before she enters the sacred land. Lastly, Ndithi, the witch man and Podho is the ancestor of Luo.

2. Setting (Place, Time, Atmosphere, Social Condition)
The setting of place is in Kenya, near the Lake of Victoria. The time is drought season, where everyone in the village is anxiously waiting to hear when it will rain. Besides that, all their cattle are dying in the fields as there is no water.
The atmosphere of the story is very anxious, tensed and confused. In paragraph 2, ‘ the atmosphere in the village was tense and confused’. The social condition is people believing in tribal law where they believe in their ancestors as gods. The chief of tribe believes whatever the ancestors of Luo told him and sacrifices of his daughter is a must to the lake monster in order to have rain. In paragraph 7, ‘Let her offer herself a sacrifice to the lake monster! On that day, the rain will come down in torrents. Let everyone stay at home on that day, lest he be carried away by the floods.’ In paragraph 9, ‘but he continued, ‘the ancestors have chosen her as a sacrifice to the lake monster in order to that we may have rain’

3. Plot

The plot applied the Freytag pyramid where in the exposition start when the chief come back from the witch man house and was told that his only daughter will be the sacrifice where his heart is totally doomed but no any other choices but sacrifice her daughter to the lake monster. Rising action is when Labong’O declared that Oganda will be the sacrifice. Oganda feels very sad and the villager prepared a big feast for her before she went on the journey to the Victoria Lake. The climax of story is when Oganda goes to the lake and she is very terrified as she thinks that she has been followed by the Lake Monster and run, finally fainted. In the falling action, Osinda appears and comes to save Oganda and the resolution is the thunder come and the rain came.

4. Theme
People generally very selfish.

The theme of the story is sacrifice for the benefits of others. Oganda is selected to die for the villager’s benefit in which they will have rain. When one person is being sacrifice to the lake monsters, everyone in the village will have rain and they will survive form drought. The cattle will also not die.
Another theme is the family ties. In the story, the Chief, his wife and their daughter has the strong bonding of love and care for each other. Labong’o loves his daughter so much that he weeps as he knows that she is going to be sacrificed to the lake monster for the villagers. His wife also faints when hears the news of their daughter being sacrificed.
Moreover, the belief in customs, traditions of the tribe is also one of the themes. In this story, the villagers of Kenya believe their ancestor as their gods and will pray for the ancestors for help. They believe that when a person, Oganda is to be sacrificed to the lake monster, rain will come.

5. Conflict

a. Human versus self
Labong’o is having conflict with himself on whether he is to sacrifice his only daughter in order to save the whole village or not sacrifice his daughter. In paragraph 4, ‘he loved his people, the Luo, but what were the Luo for him without Oganda? Her life had bought a new life in Labong’o’s world and he ruled better than he could remember. How would the spirit of the village survive his beautiful daughter?’
b. Human versus supernatural
Osinda is very brave and does not care about the ancestors following him and Oganda when they run and bad luck will be fall unto them if they are to against the ancestor’s will. In paragraph 41, ‘we must escape quickly to the unknown land.’ Osinda said urgently. ‘We must run away from the wrath of the ancestors and the retaliation of the monster.’
The action of the story is ‘the bush was thick, and the long grass entangled their feet as they ran’ (paragraph 46). Whilst, the suspense is when Oganda feels that something is following her, a sense of fear and tense arouse. In paragraph 37, ‘she looked back sharply, and something resembling a moving bush was frantically running after her.

6. Point of view

It is a third person omniscient point of view. When something happened to the character, the readers can actually feel and sense the feeling and emotion of each character because they have been told in detail while they are needed through the story. The readers know what the character thinks and feel. In the story, the reader can feels the sad and depressed emotion of Minya, Labong’o, Oganda and her grandmother. Besides that, we can feel the happiness of villagers when they dance joyfully after knowing that Oganda will be a sacrifice for the lake monster and they will have rain soon.

7. Language Style

I. Simile
In paragraph 7, ‘her skin was as fair as the skin of a young deer in the wilderness.’ In the same paragraph, ‘her tall slender figure stood as a lonely reed at the river bank. In paragraph 14, ‘she suddenly felt like panicky like a mouse cornered by a hungry cat.’ In paragraph 27, ‘she looked like a burning candle in the wilderness. In paragraph 27, ‘she felt like a flower nipped in the bud never to enjoy like morning dew again.’

II. Metaphor
In paragraph 16, ‘for a long time the three souls who loved on another dearly sat in darkness.’ The three souls represent Labong’o ,Minya, and Oganda and their strongly bond relations. In same paragraph as well, ‘taking Oganda away from them would leave two useless stones which would not hold a cooking pot.’ The useless stones represent the parents of Oganda. In paragraph 18, ‘or was it the deep warmth and understanding that passes between a suckling babe and her mother’, in which the suckling babe represents Oganda who is being like a baby towards her maternal love. In paragraph 32, ‘the rain was the precious medicine they were longing for.’

III. Symbolism
In paragraph 16, ‘they have been like three cooking stones’ which represents the relationship between the parents and daughter. In paragraph 7, ‘a young woman who has not known a man’ represents a virgin.

IV. Personification One of the personifications is “our cattle lie dying in the fields”. In paragraph 45, the sun was almost touching the surface of the water. They were frightened. They continue to run, now faster to avoid the sinking sun.’ In paragraph 50, ‘then the thunder roared, and the rain came down in torrents.

V. Irony
In paragraph 11, ‘it must be marriage’ in which Oganda is thinking of her marriage but actually is not. For verbal irony, in paragraph 13, ‘tell me, is it my marriage you were discussing? You can take it from me and I won’t marry any of them.’ In actual, Oganda wants to marry but she says the opposite of what she desires. It is also irony when the people celebrating for her death.

VI. Foreshadowing
In paragraph 1, ‘ Labong’o held out his hands for his daughter but did not say a word. Puzzled by her father’s cold attitude Oganda ran back to the village to warn the others that the chief was back.’ It brings confusion and anxiousness when Oganda’s father treats her coldly.
VII. Flashback
Labong’O thinks back the time when he is crowned as the chief of the village where he said “I will lay down his life, if necessary and the life of my household to save the tribe”. Labong’O think back the words that the medicine man, Ndithi said, “Podho, the ancestor of the Luo, appeared to me in a dream last night, and he asked me to speak to the chief and the people,” when Labong’O went to find Ndithi.

VIII. Imagery

 Visual imagery
The evidences of visual imagery are in paragraph2, ‘our cattle lie dying in the fields’ and while Podho was still talking to me, I saw a young woman standing at the lakeside, her hands raised, above her head. Besides that, she looked at her weeping mother, and whispered, “Whenever you want to see me, always look at the sunset. I will be there.”
 Auditory imagery (hear)
According to the short story of the rain came, auditory imagery appeared at the words of Ndithi, the medicine man, still echoed in his ears. “Podho, the ancestor of the Luo, appeared to me in a dream last night, and he asked me to speak to the chief and the people,” Ndithi had said to the gathering of tribesmen. Besides that, the thirsty birds that sang lazily on the dying trees. Lastly, the people who came to hear her sad song were touched by her beauty and In paragraph 31, ‘her voice was now hoarse and painful.’
 Gustatory imagery (taste)
One of the evidences of gustatory imagery is let the happy people eat. She contented herself with sips of water from a little calabash and she swallowed a mouthful of water poured into her mouth by the stranger.

 Tactile imagery (touch)
Oganda fingered the glittering chain on her waist as she tough of Osinda.

8. Conclusion
The story ends in a good ending in which Oganda is not being sacrificed and can run away together with her love ones, Osinda. Besides that, the rain came in the end.
The story affects us in the responsibility and the strong beliefs in customs and traditions. In the story, although the chief has dearly loved his only daughter very much but he takes his responsibility as the head of the Luo tribe to obey their ancestors and sacrifice the daughter to the lake monster for rain. I have learnt to be a responsible person and be strong like the chief in all obstacles in life. He takes his responsibility as a chief to bring benefits to his villagers. He has undergone a huge pain in which he has to offer up her daughter as sacrifices for the whole village’s needs, which is the rain. He puts his tribe as priority before everything else as a leader and representative. We should have personality like the chief which is responsible as a leader and head. It brings you as a liable and trustworthy person.
Besides that, we can see the strength of the villagers in following their customs and traditions. The Luo (a tribe in Northern Kenya and Uganda) believes in their ancestor as gods. It is even stronger when they turn to their ancestors for help when in time of great needs. In paragraph 2, ‘The chief had prayed daily to the almighty through the ancestors to deliver them from their distresses. The highest priority in their life is to obey and pleasing the gods (lake monster) and ancestors. It strikes us that the villages are following their customs and unlike most of the society nowadays that they do not follow their traditions and have neglected it.
The family ties are very strong in this story. We can see it from the love and care of the three family members, who are Oganda ( the daughter), Labong’o ( the father) and Minya ( the mother). Three of them love each other in which the father and mother are very depressed and sad when they know that their daughter’s life is at stake. In paragraph 4, ‘ Labong’o did not care anymore. He assumed the position of a simple father and wept bitterly’. In paragraph 16, ‘for a long time the three souls who loved on another dearly sat in darkness. It was not good speaking. In the past, they had been like three cooking stones, sharing their burdens.’ This shows that they are as one in spirit and their bonding is very strong. From this, we learn the importance of family love and being as one.…...

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...THE RAIN CAME Theme: The theme is about sacrifice someone for the better of others. In this story, the chief is a perfect example of what a leader must go through in order to save his people. Although he loves his only daughter, he is willing to sacrifice her for the rains to come and save his people from drought. His people come first, even before his precious family. This is a great quality that a leader must have in order to truly serve. Characters: Oganda: The main character of the story. She is the only daughter of Labong’o out of 20 children with the fifth wife, Minya. She is fair skinned, thin, tall, beautiful and brave. She has been raised to believe in god/ancestors. Labong’o He is the chief of the village and the loving father of Oganda. He belives in god/ancestors and is worried about pester. Osinda He belongs to another neighboring village and he was the one who gave Oganda the chain on her waist. He’s brave and willing to sacrifice for love. Minya One of the minor characters. The mother of Oganda. She loves her daughter. Ndithi One of the minor characters. The medicine man. Ndithi is a superstitious medicine man for the Labong’o tribe. He is a man that is said to have the ability to communicate with their......

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...Many of her stories are set against the scenic background of Lake Victoria and the traditions of the Luo people. One theme that features prominently within Ogot's work is the importance of traditional Luo folklore, mythologies, and oral traditions. This theme is at the forefront in "The Rain Came", a tale which was related to Ogot in her youth by her grandmother, whereby a chief's daughter must be sacrificed to bring rain.[16] Furthermore, much of Ogot’s short stories juxtapose traditional and modern themes and notions, demonstrating the conflicts and convergences that exist between the old ways of thought and the new. In The Promised Land, the main character, Ochola, falls under a mysterious illness which cannot be cured through medical intervention. Eventually, he turns to a medicine man to be healed. Ogot explains such thought processes as exemplary of the blending of traditional and modern understandings, “Many of the stories I have told are based on day-to-day life… And in the final analysis, when the Church fails and the hospital fails, these people will always slip into something they trust, something within their own cultural background. It may appear to us mere superstition, but those who do believe in it do get healed. In day-to-day life in some communities in Kenya, both the modern and the traditional cures coexist.” [17] Another theme that often appears throughout Ogot’s works is that of womanhood and the female role. Throughout her stories, Ogot demonstrates an......

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The Rain Came

...short stories both in the Luo language and in English. "The Year of Sacrifice" (later retitled "The Rain Came") was published in the African journal Black Orpheus in 1963 and in 1964, the short story “Ward Nine” was published in the journal Transition. Grace Ogot's first novel The Promised Land was published in 1966 and focused on Luo emigration and the problems that arise through migration. Set in the 1930s, her main protagonists emigrate from Nyanza to northern Tanzania, in search of fertile land and wealth. It also focused on themes of tribal hatred, materialism, and traditional notions of femininity and wifely duties.1968 saw the publishing of Land Without Thunder, a collection of short stories set in ancient Luoland. Ogot's descriptions, literary tools, and storylines in Land Without Thunder offer a valuable insight into Luo culture in pre-colonial East Africa. Her other works include The Strange Bride, The Graduate, The Other Woman and The Island of Tears. Many of her stories are set against the scenic background of Lake Victoria and the traditions of the Luo people. One theme that features prominently within Ogot's work is the importance of traditional Luo folklore, mythologies, and oral traditions. This theme is at the forefront in "The Rain Came", a tale which was related to Ogot in her youth by her grandmother, whereby a chief's daughter must be sacrificed to bring rain. Furthermore, much of Ogot’s short stories juxtapose traditional and modern themes and notions,......

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...In the short story "The Rain Came" by Grace Ogot, customs and traditional beliefs leave Oganda having to face death for her people to have rain. Oganda is to be sacrificed in order to end the drought that her people face. She is the daughter of the chief. In fact, she is the only daughter of the chief. Heart-broken, the chief knows he must give up his only daughter for the good of the people he serves. In this story, the chief is a perfect example of what a leader must go through in order to save his people. Although he loves his only daughter, he is willing to sacrifice her for the rains to come and save his people from drought. His people come first, even before his precious family. This is a great quality that a leader must have in order to truly serve. This chief can be compared to a similar story involving the sacrifice of an only son. God was willing to sacrifice his only son Jesus Christ so that his people could be saved. In the end, God's only son is raised from the dead and lives on triumphantly. In much the same way, Oganda is rescued by Osinda and taken to safety. She was willing to give her life, and that is all that it took to please the gods. When Osinda takes her to safety, the rains come down and her people are saved. The story ends with the reader wondering if she will ever see her mother and father again. If not, the price has been paid without the actual sacrificing of Oganda's life. She will forever be separated from......

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...about being a woman is the fact that we should still have to battle for our image as individuals, which is an inflection of how I came into the idea that the purpose of human kind is to breakout from the chains of the stereotypical. Humans try to debunk and destroy what exists, from beliefs to lifestyles and even to the right color of pants to match your socks. This urge to be free is the reason why Jose was shot in a park, why Romeo and Juliet died, and why all the revolutions and wars occurred. Grace Ogot or Grace Emily Akinyi, the Kenyan writer who happens to be the author of the story 'The Rain Came' and many other stories, presented the "Breaking-out" moment through the characters' struggle against the binding chains of traditions and culture. Many of her stories are set against the scenic background of Lake Victoria and the traditions of the Luo people. Luo people are interesting, in fact too interesting, specifically their traditions. They don't practice the common ritual of circumcision for males; instead they pull out 6 frontal teeth as a sign of initiation towards manhood. And these traditions are the common theme of Ogot's stories, including folklore, mythologies and sometimes, oral traditions. This theme is actually the center of "The Rain Came", a story about a chief's daughter who was chosen by the gods to be sacrificed in order for the rain to come. The story was originally entitled "A Year of Sacrifice" but changed into how it is now because of reasons I......

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