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What according to you is the significance of the naming ceremony in Anthills of the...

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abiir | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 22, 2008 at 12:36 AM via web

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What according to you is the significance of the naming ceremony in Anthills of the Savannah?

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sullymonster | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 23, 2008 at 11:34 AM (Answer #1)

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The namine ceremony symbolizes hope for the future.  The character of Africa and of its people had been decimated by European colonialism.  For years, the people had to learn to adjust to European capitalism and government, not to mention the influence of Christianity.  When the Europeans left, the nations had to rebuild themselves - they couldn't just "go back" to the way things were.  Too much time had passed.  But how does a culture find its identity after so much time and struggle?

This question is what drives the conflicts in "Anthills".  The question isn't answered completely, and much pessimism about the future of African countries is suggested by the tragic events of the novel.  However, in the naming ceremony, Beatrice is able to do two things:  1) Reconnect with African tradition and 2) Proclaim hope for the future with the name that means "May the path never close."  It may be uncertain and difficult, but the people have to continue down the path, and keep trying.

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