Long Walk to Freedom - Part One: A Country Childhood Summary & Analysis

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Summary

In Part One: A Country Childhood, Nelson Mandela opens with an account of his birth on July 18, 1918 in Mvezo, in the Transkei of South Africa. It is the home of his people, the Thembu, who are part of the Xhosa nation. His father, a chief of Mvezo, lost his chieftainship in a dispute with white officers. He describes the children’s games that they played and the different stories that his parents told him, his mother telling him “Xhosa legends and fables” (11) while his father tells him “stories of historic battles and heroic Xhosa warriors” (11).

Although Mandela was given the name Rolihlahla--which means literally, “pulling the branch of a tree” and, metaphorically, “troublemaker” (3) in Xhosa--Mandela is given the name Nelson when he goes to school. When his father passes away, he goes to study at the Great Place, as it...

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This section contains 1,022 words
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Buy the Long Walk to Freedom Study Guide
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