There are several instances of conflict in the text. Conflict occurs between husbands and wives in marriage, between siblings, between members of the extended family, between children and their parents as well as political conflicts.
Conflict in marriage is first evident in the marriage of Akoko and Owuor Kembo. This occurs when Nyar Asembo accuses her of casting a spell on her son not to marry another wife. She also complains that Akoko is not bearing enough children in light of the huge bride price paid for her. This conflict is resolved by the Jodong’o after a hearing.
Conflict is also seen in the marriage between Elizabeth Awiti and Mark Sigu. This is over her inability to conceive after the miscarriage. She even accuses mark of having given her chloroquin to deliberately make her sterile. The issue is compounded by Mark’s mother who demands an explanation for Elizabeth’s lack of children. This creates so much tension and mark has to take Elizabeth’s side to salvage the situation.
Becky’s promiscuity leads to the break-up of their marriage with John Courtney. It is said that she exchanged men like clothes, prompting John to divorce her.
Conflict is also seen among siblings. Vera and Becky’s relationship deteriorates to a point of physically fighting when they are preparing for their exams. It takes the intervention of Elizabeth to separate the two girls. Aoro and Tony vow not to take the twins to their adventures after they reveal Odongo’s near death experience. Otieno is jealous of his brother’s family and when Owuor Kembo dies, he takes advantage of the situation by plundering his wealth.
There is conflict between members of the extended family when Akoko’s relatives at Yimbo hear that their counterparts from Seme had accused their daughter of bewitchment. Such an accusation is deemed so serious that the Jodong’o is involved. Akoko does not get along with her mother-in-law the same way her granddaughter Awiti finds it difficult to maintain a cordial relationship with Mark’s mother who interferes in their marriage.
- Is there conflict in Aoro and Wandia’s marriage? If so, what are the main issues in the conflict?
- Identify the political conflicts in the text.
- Identify the various instances of conflict between parents and their children.