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In the Shadow of the Banyan
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What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Created: 05/24/13

Replies: 14

Posted May. 24, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 386

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What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

The scene when Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name is the turning point in the novel. What changes after this revelation? How does it affect Raami, and her relationship with both Papa and Mama?


Posted Jun. 04, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 108

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

The changes are enormous and happen swiftly, with no chance of turning back the clock. Papa knows that he faces death, whether it's immediate execution or torture and deprivation leading to death. The only hope of sparing his family is to step forward. Mama's emotions are a mix of horror and dismay. Mama is still relatively young, and despite the fact that it is her daughter who really "spilled the beans," I'm sure there were some immediate feelings of anger.


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Dax

Join Date: 07/17/11

Posts: 3

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Instead of her family feeling like they're all in this together and fully supporting each member, Raami became an immediate outcast, even to her own mother. Actually the family's instant blame and comments of 'oh how could you have been so stupid' , and Papa's 'oh don't blame the child' really infruriated me. It was the ADULTS who were to blame for this incident. They, not Raami, should've understood the situation & their position, and COACHED Raami ahead of time. They should have told her 'if anyone asks you what your name is.....say this' and 'if anyone asks you what Mama or Papa's names are......say this'. And 'tell them you don't know how to read or write'. WHY did the adults not take these simple measures? And I am not one who thought Papa's actions were all that heroic. I felt he raised his hand and let himself be taken away, just so that he could convince himself that he was some kind of martyr, keeping his lofty ideals in tact. Thus he had HIS best interests first and foremost in his mind and driving his actions. He absolutely should have known that abandoning his wife and daughter would do the opposite of 'protecting' them (as he convinced himself). It made them 1000% more vulnerable to be raped, beaten, tortured, etc. and then when Grandmother Queen didn't claim Mama, why was anyone surprised at what followed? Once again, the adults didnt do their duties, 1st by not coaching Raaami then turning around & blaming her, then by thinking that GQ would somehow, in her fog of dementia, understand that, if asked, she should say Mama was also one of her daughters. Really? Everyone was surprised that she didn't grasp the situation? And by Papa abandoning them (to 'save' them? Really? How was that supposed to work?) pretty much all of the worst things then began to happen to Mama and her girls. I felt Papa's action was cowardly. i think he knew what fate could await an attractive woman, w/o a husband, & 2 kids to look after, and chose to be the 1st to exit the scene so as not to have to watch what came next. So, many changes occurred, none of them good. Although I didn't think that speaking Papa's name was necessarily the catalyst for what followed.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
alisonf

Join Date: 01/31/13

Posts: 35

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

I am not sure the family really knew how to react and plan and I don't believe that prepping them to lie about identity would have ever worked. They could not go unnoticed and since Papa was the focus his actions may have saved what survived of his family. This was the beginning of the family being separated, by philosophy, approach to the situation and physical distance. They had no idea of the extent of the atrocities that their family and country faced.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Yes. Father sacrificed himself and did what he felt he had to do to protect his family.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
joyces

Join Date: 06/16/11

Posts: 200

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

I think Raami did what any child would do when put on the spot and who had been raised to be very proud of her family and father. He was being recognized and he knew that ultimately they would remove him no matter what Raami said at that time. He was fairly certain that his family were more likely to become anonymous if he was not there and they assumed new identities. After he left, with changing Organization controllers and constant changes in what they did and where they were they were able to become less visible though the situation was still very difficult.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kathleenb

Join Date: 09/14/12

Posts: 13

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

There was an instantaeous reaction when Raami tells her father's real name, ALL of her adult relatives reacted badly towards her except her father and Queen Mother(only because she had dementia). I was amazed that they had not rehearsed with all the children there new names and other things that had to say when they were asked by the Kamapibal. To blame a seven year old was extremely harsh and unnecessary. The father was immediately a marked man and probably would die very shortly after that.


Posted Jun. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
yvettet

Join Date: 09/15/12

Posts: 5

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Raami was extremely intelligent, but she was only 7. Her answer was spontaneous. Her source of information was her father's reports of his early morning walks. When her father told her the war was over, she was overjoyed. Even he did not realize that their problems would intensify to the point of genocide.


Posted Jun. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

To sum it up, the whole course of her life and her family's life changes for the worst.


Posted Jun. 09, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lesleym

Join Date: 05/12/11

Posts: 26

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

People react badly in stressful situations, so blaming Raami was pretty unjustified. I don't feel that Papa was a coward for giving himself up. He could have "tried" to protect his family, but in the end, he couldn't do much when he was outnumbered and against soldiers with guns. It was a bleak situation.


Posted Jun. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Poor Raami realized what she had done later on and it weighed on her. Even Raami's mom reminded Raami of what she had done. Life and understandings would never be the same.


Posted Jun. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 108

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

I think in many ways that Raami's guilt is one that people of many ages and cultures can relate to. That common denominator may even contribute to the emotional impact of Raami's guilt even though few of us are ever in conditions as terrifying as Raami's. What many people can and do experience is the replaying of scenes in one's mind, and the "if only" thoughts and regrets are common experiences to anyone who loses a parent.


Posted Jun. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
johnw

Join Date: 03/11/12

Posts: 22

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

The changes are significant and swift. The father knows while he certainly faces death, his only hope to save his family is to step forward. Raami’s actions are typical of any child her age. Most parents have been in similar situations when a child states something out loud we wish that had been kept private although few have been in situations as this where the consequences were so harsh.


Posted Jun. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lynnw

Join Date: 09/01/11

Posts: 37

RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

How sad but not surprising that children were used to gain information about their families. The father was so brave and caring, I could only hope to be that strong knowing that I was facing certain death.


Posted Jun. 17, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: What changes after Raami tells the Kamapibal her father's real name?

Yes. Children are the weakest link. They are honest and easily intimidated


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