The River Between

by

Ngugi wa Thiong’o

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The River Between Symbols

Circumcision

In the novel, circumcision represents one’s adherence to Gikuyu traditions and cultural identity. Every Gikuyu man and woman is circumcised, a rite of passage that ushers them into adulthood and affirms them as a true…

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The Honia River

The Honia river represents the ideological division between the neighboring villages Makuyu and Kameno. The river flows between both villages, dividing the ridges and keeping the people physically separated from each other. This separation…

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Kameno

Kameno, one of the two Gikuyu villages where the novel is set, represents the Gikuyu’s traditional tribal identity. Most notably, Kameno is the home of the Kiama, a governing council that enforces the…

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Makuyu

Makuyu, one of the two Gikuyu villages where the novel is set, represents the white people’s Christianity as well as the way that they use religion as a means to quietly further their colonial efforts…

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