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BLOSSOMS OF THE SAVANNA:
SAMPLE EXCERPTS

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SAMPLE EXCERPTS

1. Read the extract below and answer the questions that follow.

"No Joseph," she said in an infantile whimper. "I can't bear that we can't express the love that we have for one another because of some primitive culture. If by loving you, I offend the sensibilities of Nasila then let me offend and face the consequences of   doing so!"

"I also love you very much," Joseph Parmuat responded finally. "I loved you the moment I saw you during your father's homecoming ceremony. But then the clan matter came to separate us. It is true we have no blood relation. But Nasila culture dictates who are related and who are not. We are slotted among those who cannot marry."

"No, it can't be, I cannot accept its verdict," she said petulantly her words agonised. "No

way, never!" She stopped, confused and angry with herself at her inarticulate outburst. She took several long steadying breaths and then said, "I cannot accept that a culture that does not feed, clothe or house me comes to control my life. Our lives belong to us, Joseph. The destiny of our lives is in our own hands. We should guard it jealously."At last they drew a little a part .His eyes were open, honest and steady upon her face.

1. What happens before this excerpt? (3mks)

Taiyo visits Joseph's bachelor house. She expresses her infatuation. Joseph feels

infatuated too. She sobs uncontrollably

2. For both Joseph and Taiyo, give and illustrate two character traits. (4mks)

Joseph is responsible. He has self-control aimed at preventing the duo from messing up

He is patriotic. He chooses to take sides with the Nasila culture. He feels they should not break the norms.

Taiyo is loving. She has strong feelings for Joseph. Assertive. She is ready to offend sensibilities of Nasila culture for love.

Sacrificing. She is ready to risk herself for love.

3.How is dialogue significant in this excerpt? (4mks)

It brings out Taiyo's interrogative nature. She skeptically questions the enslaving nature of Nasila culture. "I cannot accept culture that does not feed me." She poses that culture should be beneficial.

4.Explain any two thematic concerns addressed in the excerpt. (4mks)

He accepts to be the contact man in the mission of rescuing Taiyo. He makes her
captors drunk leading to her escape. The captors later kill him.

5.From elsewhere in the novel, how does Joseph sacrifice for his love for Taiyo?(4mks)

.Love. Taiyo and Joseph express their views towards love. She feels it should be let to grow while he feels culture should restrain love feelings.

Culture. Their love relationship is held at ransom by culture that objects love between people of the same clan.

6. Explain the meaning of the following vocabulary as used in the excerpt. (4mks)

a) destiny

            Fate

b) infantile

          Childish/ immature

c) petulantly

           Grudgingly

d) primitive

            Fate

7. What happens immediately after this extract? (2mks)

         Joseph says he is ready to face any eventuality that may arise out of love.

Taiyo  appreciates the new stance of Joseph. She sheds tears.

2. Read the excerpt below and answer the questions that follow

You are mad!" Resian screamed at him. You are stark mad if you think I am your wife. I can only be your wife over my dead body. Yes, you and my father can kill me and carry my dead body to your palatial home."

He was stunned by those harsh words. He winced as if he had been struck. Then already harsh line of his mouth tightened and he stood tense for a moment. Then he relaxed and watched her mockingly. "You can never escape Resian," he repeated quietly, smiling. The very normality of his voice as he spoke those monstrous words was most shocking and disturbing to her. Whether you scream your heart out, or jump into the deep sea, Resian, you are mine. You are my wife from now henceforth"

"I want to go now." Resian announced angrily shuddering with disgust and terror.

"You want to go?" he asked, the contemptuous quiet of his voice a menace by itself." Go! You want to be persuaded, coaxed and pampered to marry Oloisudori Lonkiyaa? Sorry I will not do that! If you want to go, please yourself. You may opt to go, but when you are mine, you will do as I please. No one plays games with Oloisudori. Ask your father, he will tell you."

"Stop it! Stop it! Resian screamed excruciatingly pained by the disdainful remarks of Oloisudori. Putting her hands over her ears, she made a dash for the door. He made no effort to stop her but she flung it open and turned to glare at him with tearful eyes

You are mad! She screamed again sobbingly. "You are stark mad! You hear me? You are nothing but ol-ushuushi." She walked away and as she did so, she heard his soft laughter behind her.

1. Say what happens before this excerpt. (3mks)

Oloisudori informs Resian of the benefits she will get for marrying him. Resian gets very annoyed and speechless. Resian learns that her father has already received dowry for her marriage to Oloisudori. He reports to her that their fate is sealed.

2. How is Oloisudori portrayed in this excerpt? (4mks)

Contemptuous."He asked, the contemptuous quiet of his voice a menace by itself."
Proud. He feels superior and egocentric. "No one plays games with Oloisudori. Asked your father, he will tell you."

3. Describe the feeling of Resian in this excerpt (3mks)

She is feeling disappointed and desperate of her father's action of receiving dowry
with an aim of sealing her marriage with Oloisudori. She feels really betrayed.

4. From other areas of the novel, state other crimes that are practiced by Oloisudori. (3mks).

Extortion, assassinations shadowy businesses, sexual immorality, robber, smuggler,poacher

5. How does the writer utilize irony in this excerpt? (3mks)

It is ironical that Oloisudori who is older than Resian's father plans to marry Resian a young girl even after he is told her wish is to study at the university. It is also ironical that Kaelo has already picked dowry from Oloisudori and has never bothered to inform Resian of it.

6. "You are my wife from now henceforth" Rewrite in the reported speech.(1mk)

He told her that she was her wife from then henceforth.

7. Explain the meaning of the following words (4mks)

a)                 Pampered

               Insane

b)                 Disgust

            Grand/ like a palace

     c) Mad

           Strong loathe

c)                 Palatial

         Treat with excessive care

8. What happens immediately after this extract? (3mks)

Resian rans blindly knocking a chair and a table and disappears past Oloisudori's
driver. She goes to her father's shop. She is raving mad with indignation. She becomes very disappointed with her father.

3. Read the following excerpt and answer the questions that follow.

They were silent as they climbed the hill on their way back from Nasila river to draw water. The water containers that they carried on their backs were now heavy. The straps that supported the containers pressed down their heads with a painful exhaustion.

As they walked, each one of them allowed her mind to fleetingly roam the fanciful land of wishful thinking.

Resian thought how wonderful it would be, had she had a chance to enroll at the Egerton University and after graduation had a chance to work with her role model, Minik ene Nkoitoi, the Emakererei at the sheep ranch that she managed. She imagined herself already there driving a large flock of sheep. And when she thought of sheep, her mind flew back to fifteen years or so earlier and reminisced the first time she saw a sheep. It was a childhood memory, a memorable picture from the swirling scene around her which had been captured and preserved by her mind when she and Taiyo accompanied their father to the Nakuru Agricultural Show. She could still see in her mind a group of big, docile, tawny woolly animals that stood panting drowsily in a green pasture, with the

sun beaming down brightly from a clear blue sky. She had then admired the white long overcoats that the handlers wore.

Taiyo also thought of Emakererei. She would ask Joseph Parmuat, to assist her compose a song in her praise. She had already put words to a tune she had composed to ridicule the three women who she thought collaborated with men to oppress the women folk. They were Nasila's three blind mice who, she thought, did not seem to know that the world was changing. Those were the enkasakutoni, who threatened to curse intoiye nemengalana and ensured they did not get husbands nor children: the midwife Enkaitoyoni who threatened to spy on the young women as they gave birth to ensure that any who was still among intoiye-nemengalana had her status altered there and then; and the dreaded Enkamuratani, who would never tire of wielding her olmurunya menacingly.

1. Place the excerpt in its immediate context. (4Mks)

Before the excerpt, Taiyo and Resian go to the River to fetch water. They remember their discussion with their aunt and admire Minik's fight against women oppression by men. They muse that men must be very angry with her for snatching five hundred girls from her. After the excerpt, Taiyo sings the song she has composed about three women whom she refers as mice silently in her heart. One of those women is the enkamuratani chasing a woman with a knife.

2. Identify and illustrate two aspects of style in this excerpt. (4Mks)

Flashback- Resian recalls fifteen years back when she and Taiyo accompanied their father to the Nakuru agricultural show and she saw sheep the first time.


Vivid description-The sheep are vividly described as big, docile tawny wooly animals.


Metaphors-She calls the three women who collaborated with men to oppress women as Nasila's three blind mice.

3. Discuss two themes evident in the excerpt. (4Mks)

Theme of Determination or optimism. Resian is full of optimism that one day she
would join Egerton university.


Women as their own enemies. The three Nasila women collaborated with men to
oppress women.


Negative cultural practices. The three women propagate negative cultural practices
against women such as F.G.M

4. Discuss one character trait of Resian and Taiyo in the excerpt. (4Mks)

Resian is visionary. She thought how wonderful it would be, had she a chance to
enroll at the Egerton University. She dreams of going to university.
Taiyo-critical-she wants to compose a song ridiculing three Nasilian women who
collaborated with men to oppress women.

5. The straps that supported the containers pressed down their heads with a painful exhaustion.  Rewrite beginning: with.................................................(1Mk)

With a painful exhaustion, the straps that supported the containers pressed down
their heads.

6. How do Resian's thoughts now come to be fulfilled in future? Briefly explain.(4Mks)

Later, she is rescued from a planned marriage by Nabaru and is taken to Minik's
ranch. There, she is given a house and a job. Minik also helps in securing their
admission at Egerton University. She also gives a scholarship. The novel ends when she and Taiyo are going to University.

7. Explain the meaning of the following words as used in the excerpt. (4Mks)

(i) Reminisced

   Recall/Recalled

(ii) Collaborated

Worked together

(iii) Dreaded

Feared

(iv) Menacingly

Threateningly

4. Read the following excerpt and answer the questions that follow

"Yes, Papaai," Resian said apprehensively. "I am here. Taiyo tells me you are calling me?"

"Yes, yes," her father replied. "Please take a seat."

"Yes, Papaai," Resian repeated as she sat on a chair far away from her father. "Come nearer...child," her father said pleasantly.

"Why do you sit a mile away? Come nearer."

Resian moved her chair hardly an inch from where it was and then she looked up into her

father's face with eager expectation.

"If I do remember well," her father began in a low even tone, "you will be nineteen in September this year, am I right"

"You are quite right, Papaai." Resian answered eyeing him curiously. His face was unusually kind. His eyes held hers as he smiled broadly. That's it!' she thought triumphantly. "That must be it!

"You and I have not discussed important issues for a long time," he said with a friendly chuckle that was intended to bring her closer to him. "I thought today would be the best day to break the news. Your future is very important to me, my dear child."

Resian thought the concern in her father's voice, rang false. She hesitated, but could not hold herself any more. The anxiety was too great.

"Papaai, is it Yeiyo or Taiyo who spoke to you?" she asked sensationally, thinking she was stating the obvious. But seeing her father's face cloud, she added quickly.

"Who between them spoke to you about our enrolment at the Egerton University?"

"What are you talking about, child? Her father, who seemed dumbfounded, asked after a long and uncomfortable silence.

"Both Yeiyo and Taiyo promised to talk to you about it, and I thought she had."

"What, in the name of God are you talking about, child?" he repeated, this time agitated and shaking his head vigorously. "No, I have never spoken to anybody about any of you enrolling at the university. Never! When I said I wanted us to discuss your future, that isn't what I meant at all. Of course not!" Resian looked at her father's face enquiringly.

1. What has happened before the excerpt? (3mks)

Ole Kaelo sends Taiyo to call Resian for him. Resian feels hopeful and excited that

she is being called to be informed about admission to the university. She thinks that it is her mother or sister who has talked to her father about the matter.

2. What is so ironical in this passage? Explain your answer referring to elsewhere in the novel. (3mks)

It is ironical for Resian to think that her father is going to tell her about her dream wish of joining Egerton University but he has plans to marry her off to his friend Oloisudori. This is even as he says "your future is very important to me"

3. "Your future is very important to me, my dear child" From elsewhere in the novel, explain why Ole Kaelo tells his daughter so. (3Mks)

He says this because he has plans to marry her to his friend Oloisudori. If this
succeeds, his business would be saved because Oloisudori had helped him establish the business and even building his house in Nasila.

4. Discuss two aspects of character in Resian in this excerpt. (4Mks)

Ignorant- she thinks that her father has good news about joining university which is
not the case. She says, "That's it!" She thought triumphantly. "Is it Yeiyo or Taiyo who spoke to you?"


Apprehensive. She replies to her father apprehensively.


Fearful- she is in fear of her father. She sits on a chair far from her father.

5. What major issue is addressed in this excerpt? (2Mks)

Determination/optimism. Resian is very much determined to join Egerton University.
 

She thinks it is the reason why her father has called her. "Who between them spoke to you about our enrollment at the Egerton University."

6. Explain what happens after this excerpt. (3Mks)

After the excerpt, Ole Kaelo hesitates telling Resian what he wanted to tell her and
tells her to go to the kitchen. He tells her to tell her mother to come.

7. "Who between them spoke to you about our enrolment at the Egerton university? "Rewrite in the direct speech. (1Mk)

She asked him who between them had spoken to him about their enrollment at the
Egerton University.

8. A part from irony, discuss any other aspect of style evident in the excerpt. (2Mks)

Suspense. The reader is left in suspense wanting to know why Ole Kaelo had called
his daughter.


Dialogue- there is dialogue between Resian and her father. It reveals the strained
relationship between daughter and father.

9. Explain the meaning of the following words and expressions used in the excerpt. (4 Mks)

(i). Apprehensively

Nervously/worriedly/fearfully

 (ii). Sit a mile away

Sit far away

(iii). Hold herself

Control herself

(iv). Agitated

Troubled/disturbed

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