What major themes of the novel are developed by Sibeko's reluctance to approach Kumalo directly?
The fact that Sibeko felt he could not approach Stephen Kumalo directly highlights the theme of segregation within the novel. Even though Sibeko was a native as well, he did not belong to Stephen Kumalo's church and felt that he didn't have the right to request his assistance. This is a more minor illustration of a much larger problem. Apartheid in South Africa segregated the natives and the white man, and even though the natives were larger in number, they were oppressed by the minority.