Season of Migration to the North


Tayeb Salih

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The narrator’s grandfather Character Analysis

The narrator’s grandfather is a man nearing 90. He is a role model for the narrator, who looks up to him as a pillar of strength and endurance and as an example of how to live simply and happily. In spite of his age, the narrator’s grandfather is in full possession of his mental and physical powers. A religious man, he constantly carries a rosary in his hand and goes regularly to the mosque to attend prayers. He is good friends with Bint Majzoub, Wad Rayyes, and Bakri, with whom he spends his free time chatting and laughing. The murder of Wad Rayyes by Hosna Bint Mahmoud, however, devastates him, and sets the familiar world of the village of Wad Hamid—where he has spent his entire life—upside down.
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The narrator’s grandfather Character Timeline in Season of Migration to the North

The timeline below shows where the character The narrator’s grandfather appears in Season of Migration to the North. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Migration and Identity Theme Icon
...he feels a sense of stability and rootedness. He thinks of the fact that his grandfather can tell him stories about the village as it was fifty—or even eighty—years ago. During... (full context)
Migration and Identity Theme Icon
Two days after the narrator’s visit to his grandfather, Mustafa knocks on the narrator’s door. The narrator is at home with his family during... (full context)
Chapter 3
Conquest and Colonialism Theme Icon
Migration and Identity Theme Icon
The narrator then went to his grandfather’s house, where he found him already preparing for his morning prayers. In the presence of... (full context)
Chapter 5
Gender and Violence Theme Icon
Modernity and Change Theme Icon
During his visit to the village, the narrator goes to his grandfather’s house, standing outside a door built by the “village engineer” Wad Baseer. He notes, however,... (full context)
Gender and Violence Theme Icon
After the guests leave, the narrator’s grandfather informs the narrator that Wad Rayyes wants to marry Mustafa Sa’eed’s widow, Hosna. Wad Rayyes... (full context)
Chapter 8
Gender and Violence Theme Icon his father and asked that he tell the narrator to marry her. The narrator’s grandfather, too, refuses to share any details about the recent events. He mourns the death of... (full context)