Provide a critical analysis of A Question of Power.

You could analyze Bessie Head’s novel A Question of Power in terms of its autobiographical nature, its representation of mental illness, what it says about gender, and what it might reveal about colonialism. An autobiographical analysis could compare Head with Elizabeth. An analysis of mental illness would delve in Elizabeth’s vulnerable psychological state. A gender analysis could look at oppressive Dan. A colonial analysis could compare harmful Dan with helpful Tom.

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You have a lot of options as you pursue your critical analysis of Bessie Head’s novel A Question of Power.

One way in which you could analyze Head’s book is by discussing the autobiographical aspects of the novel. You could delve into the similarities between Elizabeth and Head....

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You have a lot of options as you pursue your critical analysis of Bessie Head’s novel A Question of Power.

One way in which you could analyze Head’s book is by discussing the autobiographical aspects of the novel. You could delve into the similarities between Elizabeth and Head. You could talk about how Head’s own experiences as a mixed-race daughter and single mom helped contribute to the narrative arc of Elizabeth.

Another analysis you could undertake could center on mental illness. You could focus on Elizabeth’s unstable mental condition. You could meditate on how her marginalization within the village provides the framework for her fragile psyche. You might also want to address the murky boundary between her reality and her hallucinations.

Additionally, you could critique the novel in terms of gender. You might want to focus on Elizabeth’s relationship with Dan. You could spotlight how Dan’s cruel, almost sadistic behavior contributes to Elizabeth’s mental instability. You might also want to bring in Dan’s apparent homosexuality and discuss how that might reinforce Elizabeth’s trepidation of men.

Dan could also play a role in the next kind of critique you could provide—that is, an analysis of colonialism. It might be interesting to compare Dan with Tom. Remember, Dan is African and Tom is American. Yet it’s Dan, the native, who represents the bad influence. Tom, the Western foreigner, serves as a good influence. You might want to think about how Head could be using these men to show that outsiders aren’t automatically harmful. Sometimes, the harm can come from the indigenous subjects.

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