Grace Ogot was born in Kenya's central Nyanza district in 1930. Much of her fiction stories are based on customs, history and traditions of the Luo tribe
which is the second largest ethnic group in Kenya. They lived for the most part near Lake Victoria. The Luo migrated from the Nile region of Sudan around 15
century. Originally they were pastoralists but later became fishermen and farmers.
The story is set in Kenya, where the Luo tribe had settled near Lake Victoria. The village was facing a severe drought and was in desperate need for rain.
The tribe strongly believed in the role of their ancestors as being gods. They also believed that a sacrifice was needed in order to please the ancestors so
that they may have rain. They all believe in the word of the medicine man, and blindly believed in what the medicine man has told them. He had told Labong'o
that Podho the ancestor of the Luo had told him to tell Labong'o that a young woman is to be sacrificed. He then describes the woman and how to recognize
Even stronger then that was their belief in the ancestors. We can see the strength of their belief in ancestors as in the time of great need they turn to the
ancestors "So the chief had daily prayed with the Almighty through the ancestors to deliver them form their distress." The uppermost priority for them is
pleasing the gods and ancestors.
Grace Ogot uses the example of three cooking stones to show the love and closeness that Oganda and her parents shared, yet still they must sacrifice her to
please the lake monster "Let her offer herself a sacrifice to the lake monster." Although everyone loved her, "One whom we love and treasure must be taken
away from us." The chief must consider his tribe before all else. "Oganda is to die." The belief in tradition and custom is so strong that the chief who
loves his daughter so much is willing to sacrifice her because if he didn't, "It would mean disobeying the...