The Smell of Apples by Mark Behr is about an eleven year old child experiences with the social turmoil and racial oppression that are destroying his own land. This story is set in South Africa during apartheid era in the 1970s. Many coming of age stories seems to be written with some sort of discrimination, which builds one of the characters into a strong or weaker person by the end of the novel.
In the last portion of the reading one theme that stood out was discrimination. Discrimination is an unfair difference treatment of people based on their race, gender, religion or disability. In fact, some people tend to discriminate against for no apparent reason, so such victims go through a struggle to show that they are equal in race and gender. Throughout, the novel the discrimination grew and was very graphic, which tells me that during the apartheid era discrimination was common and up and out in the open.
Apartheid in South African in the 1970s was a period when Africans political rights were taken away in three of the country's four states. Blacks are fired from jobs which are given to whites. Africans educated at missionary schools attempt to organize to resist white rule and gain political power. Their efforts are weakened because few Africans are literate, communication is poor, and access to money or other resources is limited; making it harder for Africans to survive.
"Whether Little-Neville a Colored is to, it doesn't matter, you shouldn't do things like that to someone, especially not a child" (138). In this line you hear the concern of the main characters' mother. The narrator explains that little- Neville is a 10-year-old Colored young boy, who was accused of stealing some charcoals. A group of Caucasian men decided that it was their duty to punish him. They fry little- Neville in front of a locomotive engine, without finding out whether or not Neville indeed did... [continues]
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