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Weep Not, Child facts for kids

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Weep Not, Child is a novel written by the Kenyan author Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o. It is his first novel and was published in 1964 under the names James Ngugi. It was the first English novel published by an East African.

Weep Not, Child deals with British colonialism and the Mau Mau Uprising.


Njoroge is a young Kenyan boy. He is the first one in his family to go to school. His family lives on land owned by Jacobo, an African who became rich by making deals with white settlers (specifically Mr. Howlands).

Everyone is focused on the trial of Jomo Kenyatta. A lot of black people think he will help Kenya become independent. But Kenyatta loses and goes to jail. This leads to more people protesting and more suppression of the black population.

Jacobo and Mr. Howlands fight against the Mau Mau.

Njoroge tries to kill himself. However, his mothers find him before he can succeed. He is disappointed and ashamed of being a coward.


  • Njoroge is the main character. He goes to school to be educated as possible.
  • Ngotho is Njoroge's father.
  • Nyokabi and Njeri are Ngotho's wives. Njeri is Ngotho's first wife and mother of Boro, Kamau, and Kori. Nyokabi is his second wife and mother of Njoroge and Mwangi.
  • Boro, Kamau, Kori and Mwangi are Njoroge's brothers. Mwangi and Njoroge share the same mom and dad. Mwangi died in World War II.
  • Mwikaki is Njoroge's friend. He later develops a crush on her.
  • Jacobo is the village chief. He is Mwikaki's father.
  • Mr. Howlands is a white Englishman. He owns the land that belonged to Ngotho's ancestors.


Weep Not, Child talks about Kikuyu stories and African nationalism. It also explores the negative effects of colonialism and imperialism.

Jomo Kenyatta, who was the first prime minister of Kenya, is portrayed as a savior of the nation in the novel.

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