After making a speech in a stadium, which breaks his banning order, Biko was arrested and appeared in court. In the courtroom, his look and decorum were like anyone else appearing in court; which was something unexpected since he is black. Judge Regter and the State Prosecutor were in charge of that trial. The Prosecutor was harsh in throwing questions towards Biko, trying to ambush him, but with each question, Biko was confident and responded fluently, which amazed everyone in the courtroom since this eloquence was not expected from a black activist.
In this scene, the author uses a multitude of words to describe the characters and the atmosphere of the courtroom. In fact, the descriptive imagery of the characters depicts that atmosphere and give readers a good idea of how it could be envisioned. The author describes Biko’s neat appearance, which gives the reader an impression about the importance of the courtroom. It also shows how unexpected it would seem for those in the courtroom to see a black man all dressed up for court. Biko’s appearance was also an illustration of his eloquence in words. He was quite the spokesman and his appearance mirrored his refinement. The author describes the prosecutor, and the way in which he starts interrogating Biko. He uses Biko’s own words to question him and then asks for Biko’s interpretation of what he means. Moreover, the author uses the reactions of Biko and the audience to create that atmosphere. For example, the prosecutor laughing after each question and waiting for Biko’s response for the audience, or thinking about a proper and convincing answer for Biko. The author also describes the actions of the prosecutor to help in creating the overall atmosphere, such as looking for a certain paper to seize an opportunity and how angry or astonished he looks after Biko’s responses. All of these descriptions of the character feed the general atmosphere of the courtroom successfully and sufficiently.
Biko’s answers to the prosecutor’s flow of questions were direct, clear and powerful. His responses both impressed and wowed the audience. This combination was capable of surprising everyone in the court; in addition to making him feel triumphant after answering each question. Biko’s responses entailed the use of simple language, yet, his delivery of his answers was eloquent, classy, and understandable. For a black man, this was not the expected norm. He primarily used passives more often to show that he represented the entire community and how much he cares about its well-being. On the other hand, the prosecutor and the judge used the question forms and emphatic clauses more often in an effort to try and trap Biko on more than one occasion.
In conclusion, I believe that this scene is one of the most powerful scenes in this work, and one of its key events actually. This scene shows the fluency of Biko’s words and his massive confidence and charisma to demonstrate how influential he was. The scene can be interpreted as being deep and going beyond the bounds of hard lines of questioning and eloquent answers exchanged between the prosecutor, the judge and Biko. The scene also speaks to the ugly racial discrimination of that era by showing how difficult it could be to live in that or any community where Whites held the ideology that they were superior to anyone else, especially Blacks. In the scene, everyone was amazed by Biko’s fluency and did not expect that coming from a black man. Their preconceived notions were blown apart by Biko’s confidence and eloquent answers, which gave the audience a reason to look at Blacks differently and not assume that all Blacks were uneducated and ignorant. The author portrays Biko as a hero because he was a spokeman for the black community. Despite the antagonistic, prejudice nature of the Whites within the community, in every response, Biko is deliberate when he mentions the societal hardships of the black community in an effort to convey his thoughts regarding his community’s struggles in a confident, strong manner. Biko was the voice of his community and for Blacks facing similar struggles everywhere.